The connective character of blogs is on display in a couple of places: posts and answering posts that extend ideas.

The first:

Jon Udell suggested an opt-in $3 Citizen Media Fund in the states to support slicing and dicing…

… what politicians and pro pundits say, by candidate and by issue, across venues, recombine that material to support a whole new level of scrutiny and analysis.


Use the proceeds to collect raw video footage of candidates, and create Mechanical Turk HITs (human intelligence tasks) to parcel out the editing and tagging.

To which David Wienberger adds:

I of course like the prospect of having a huge pile of well-tagged candidate videos — it’s so miscellaneous! — but I think there’s zero prospect of this coming through the government. Nor should it. We’ve got the pile, thanks to YouTube and the candidate’s own sites. If we get it tagged well enough, someone will build a site that lets us search through them and cluster them. And if someone builds a site, we’ll tag ’em well enough. It could be a citizen group, a media site, or YouTube or Technorati.

Of such discussions are great ideas born.

The second:

Scott Karp says Reinventing The News Business Requires A Little Imagination. The lack of imagination by publishers, he writes, is keeping them from taking steps to reinvent themselves. On suggestion he makes:

So here’s the idea (finally) — instead of asking people to donate cash or pay for news to help keep journalism alive, neither of which will fly, why not ask people to donate classified advertising.

His argument is interesting: people make all sorts of economically “irrational” choices — such as paying thousands of dollars more for a Prius — because they recognize something of value. Readers who value journalism, he suggests, may apply the same “irrationality” when it comes to paying for classified ads.

Not so fast, replies Howard Owens in Newspapers should not expect readers to save them. (Although if readers will not save them, who will?)

My question is: Will people donate their paid classifieds to a business that maintains 20 percent profit margins? And then there is that whole love/hate thing people have with media. There is also the issue of declining readership, especially among young people.

Just who will the donors be? Probably the same people who already see the value of newspapers and because of that perceived value, buy ads now.

Besides, I’m not a big fan of newspaper companies begging for hand outs. Either we have to figure out how to better serve our communities and operate more effectively as digital businesses, or we don’t deserve the community’s support.

And thus the conversation continues, ideas are explored and potential solutions to pressing problems gnawed over, poked at and prodded to live (or not).

Nothing new about that, of course, but what the internet brings to it is the speed of almost real-time, combined with the stickiness that comes with the near permanence of posts.

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