The Shorenstein Center on the Press, Politics, and Public Policy at the Harvard Kennedy School recently hosted an event entitled "How to Make Money in News: New Business Models for the 21st Century". This reminded me of a Washington Post editorial by Michael Gerson contrastingly titled “Journalism’s slow, sad death”. I came across the editorial a while back and decided to hold on to my copy, intending to reflect on some of Gerson’s points. Chancing upon the Shorenstein Center event provided me with just the opportunity.
As I reread Gerson’s piece, the following point jumped out at me: “… the whole (news and information) system is based on a kind of intellectual theft. Internet aggregators (who link to the news they don’t produce) and bloggers would have little time to collect or comment upon without the costly enterprise of newsgathering and investigative reporting. The old-media dinosaurs remain the basis for the entire media food chain. But newspapers are expected to provide their content free on the Internet.”