WaPo reporters just going from one media biggie to another

The blogosphere is going gaga over news reports that two Washington Post reporters have quit and will start producing content for another media company. The typical angle is “print reporters defect to web” (see: Romenesko).

From the Times:

The Washington Post, which has long prided itself on the depth and breadth of its coverage of national politics, lost two of its top political reporters yesterday to a fledgling multiplatform news organization, albeit one with deep pockets.

John Harris, The Post’s political editor, and Jim VandeHei, a national political reporter, said yesterday that they were leaving The Post to join Allbritton Communications to create an Internet-focused news organization, as yet unnamed, that will include a politics-only Web site. It will be affiliated with the company’s new newspaper in Washington, The Capitol Leader, which is to start print publication in January.

Note the bit I put in bold. Also note that this “web start up,” as some have called it, is the product of Allbritton, which operates six television stations, including one in Washington. The new Web site will also reportedly be affiliated with broadcast television.

So, it seems to me, that far from being further evidence that old media is dead (and note, I am among those who believe it is deeply troubled, if not dying — though I’m more about web opportunity than threat), this story is more about how quality journalism STILL relies old media for its subsidy.

This is just another big media play. I wouldn’t expect anything disruptive or innovative. I wonder if they’ll even have comments on stories?

It’s probably more important to note that the competition for experienced and trained journalists will only intensify as the media universe continues to expand.

[tags]journalism, web, online news, washington post, politics[/tags]

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