Is a TV newsroom a “middleman” in local news?

Michael Rosenblum, my dear friend and fellow traveler, has come up with an idea that will doubtless further alienate himself with television news people — do away with the middleman in TV news, the news department! That’s right. Michael views things this way:

Local TV news stations start their morning meetings by going through the local papers to find the stories they should be covering.

They do this because they only have a very small number of crews to cover the day’s news, and so each crew assignment must come back with a story. What better way to insure that than to simply steal the day’s news from the paper, who has already done the work?

This is really nothing more than a very early and primitive form of Google new aggregation…

As the local paper moves to video and begins to equip its reporters with video cameras, instead of just putting the video on the paper’s website, (where admittedly it gets limited play) why not sell the video (and the reporting.. and maybe also the reporter) to the local TV station?

This is certainly an idea that some companies will explore, and it’s a typically disruptive concept from the fertile mind of the father of the VJ movement. Rock on, Michael.


  1. Hi Terry
    When you think about it, it makes sense.
    Let the papers do the acquisition and let the tv station be the publisher.
    Its a win-win (except for those who work at the tv station, but you can’t make everyone happy).

  2. Love it. in 1996 you were talking about a “new model” for our newsroom… something that was more of a newsgathering community that would cut costs and increase content. Kinda like empowering every employee to “tell stories”

  3. I think MSNBC is already down this track. I heard recently that they just went ahead of CNN. A regular feature are people from politico and Tina Brown’s website. If newspapers focused on their jobs as editor/filters maybe alot of newspaper talent could go independent. Meanwhile, being a middleman in a network economy monetizes value. It’s a VAR for information.

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