Thursday, July 31, 2008

is Dan going to answer?


John, I think he *is* suggesting a “solution”: stop self-serving baseless pontification.

This is what I’m getting from the following and this is what Seth has been saying for a very long time.

” I’ve noticed that the business-model of A-listers is to tell other people to change their business-model (”Everything You Know Is Wrong! It’s A New Era!”). Except the A-listers can profit whether or not their advice is good or bad, right or wrong - and hence, sometimes can be downright hostile to rigorous analysis (present company excepted, of course). But the actual numbers (when one can find them :-( ) are nowhere near as supportive as the breezy pontification.” (July 31st, 2008 at 5:47 am)


Seth is pointing out obvious fundamental flaws in the arguments. That doesn’t make him perfect, of course — just the voice of reason.


Dan: The chance to get *something* is not much of a risk.

Seth: To the contrary, you have to hire a web person, deal with server hosting and bandwidth issues, that all costs money. It’s not zero-vs-positive. There’s quite a risk of negative.

and on and on…


STILL MORE: good luck, Seth! It looks like you've got Jon backing you up, also... so I shouldn't be too badly missed:)


P.S. If you ever get Dan to really answer, it would be interesting to hear it -- otherwise, it just feels like running in circles... D.


a milder way to ask the core questions Seth is asking — not that he would *need* to ask them milder — might be:


#1. what are the “obvious ways” (that escape Seth and me, at a minimum) of breaking even? (you were implying at least breaking even is a given)

#2. what would it take for you — what facts — to conclude that there would be a significant risk of not getting the advertising revenue needed even in the long run ? (and just how long a view are you taking? it *cannot* be …. forever…)


P.S. I can see an argument that even if you loose some money by opening the archives there would be positive externalities that would at least compensate for that but Seth is correct that you (or anybody else talking authoritatively on these issues) need to” show your work” (the concrete rational steps that bring you to your conclusion) or acknowledge that it’s just not a well founded guess… it may be a hope… or something else… D.


re: ““If we take 3 gills of pixie-powder and add it to 5 drams of fairy-dust, it’ll be enough for a unicorn in a magic kingdom”. LOL

you are getting to be funny, Seth:) — haven’t noticed that side of you.


P.S. BTW, I can use some back-up on Craig Newmark’s blog (a post referring to what seems like Dan’s rosy presentation of the situation); thanks! D.



It sounds all nice and fluffy... but I wonder if you see any real issues with it.

The sort of problems Seth keeps throwing at you on your blog come to mind: is it mostly hype? it is largely smoking mirrors allowing the few to profit and the many to be exploited?

If Seth is correct, doesn't sound like much progress, does it?


P.S. In the few years I've been reading your blog I haven't seen you directly address the problems he constantly brings up... I've often wondered why...D

Saturday, July 26, 2008

strive to be a researcher (not a journalist...)

I'm not sure if this is what Jon meant, but a true researcher (not the kind that gets paid to look up things so that *others* can use them... the term seems a misnomer in such circumstances) is much more than just a journalist. There are lousy researchers and there are great journalists, of course, but that doesn't change the fact that doing serious research and doing serious journalism are just not at the same level, although these are both useful endeavors. Striving to be a true researcher, as opposed to a journalist, is a higher goal.


P.S.And I agree with Seth... dumping the whole analysis process in the lap of the readers because the journalist just can't be perfectly objective sounds like a copout to me... and the readers truly don't have the time to do your job for you :) -- (I don't mean *you*, in particular...) D.

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Public journalism and citizen journalism


Some people (French) thought the two concepts were pretty much the same, that “citizen journalism” is just “public journalism” in the internet age… I suppose not particularly flatering to Jay:)


P.S. Here is a translation I did for Jay (and his readers) back in 2006:

P.P.S. his blog was pretty decent in terms of topics, just a bit much to take on the personal level (way too much pointless bickering…) D.