Media debate heats up this week

Lou Grant over at Chi-Town Daily News has an interesting analysis today on the shifting sands of Chicago’s media landscape in the wake of a report released this week by the Community Media Workshop that has provided ample opportunity for discussion and debate.

While ChicagoNow was absent from the report (we’re still beta, baby), Grant’s post is quite positive about our efforts and what we hope to achieve as the network develops.

A number of web sites have developed similar ideas, including Huffington Post, Gapers Block and WindyCitizen. But like HuffPo it may become the most visible local site to have your blog hosted.

We certainly want to provide a platform for Chicagoans to express their own views and create a sense of community online that reflects what makes Chicago so great. While city neighborhoods might be among the most segregated in the nation, we have a chance to break down those walls and establish a new form of dialogue that breaks past racial, economic and social barriers by inviting everyone to the party.

Another interesting point in Grant’s analysis is that:

The web continues to move faster than any person can comprehend. It is
an ongoing event, with constantly changing players and plays by
unexpected actors with no rules.

It’s difficult, if not impossible, these days to control where a conversation will take place. But the key is to know where that conversation is and share it with everyone else. (It also helps to understand the blogosphere, ChicagoNow’s Mike Doyle points out.) At its heart, that’s what journalism is all about, whether its word-of-mouth, on TV, in print, radio or anywhere else.

As the Chicago Reader’s Michael Miner notes in Hot Type, there are some rules and they could be changing. Meantime, we encourage responsible blogging.

While the destiny of news continues to be debated in this town, expect the next installment from the fine folks who are hosting the Chicago Media Future Conference tomorrow.

The Tribune’s social media maven Amanda Maurer will be among the other fine folks discussing why and how that future is brighter than ever.


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  • Good Conference.

    If you missed it here's the link to listen to audio from the discussions.

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