Story location: http://archive.pressthink.org/2004/11/06/ntc_cont.html
PressThink is thinking of expanding the masthead and taking on a contributor— one person to help me do this blog. Contributions once or twice a week, more when I am traveling or otherwise unable to write. I need someone familiar with the blog, able to diagnose and write vividly about press behavior, press thinking, press pyschology, as well as the tensions between mainstream journalism and the Web. Also someone able to research the Web, pile up the links, perhaps solicit guest writers, monitor comments, and generally add to the life of the site as it gains traffic and draws attention.
Odds are the right person is a journalist or former journalist, or has a background in media studies. But who knows? It could be someone young. Or retired. It would help broaden PressThink’s sensibility to have someone female. It could be an inspired amateur with no background at all who’s smart and informed and great with the Web. And it could be that my search turns up no one quite right, so I drop the idea.
The exact nature of the contributor’s contributions will depend, of course, on the contributor’s strengths and interests; but for one model see Terry Teachout’s About Last Night, elegantly written and designed. It features a regular guest commentator, Our Girl in Chicago.
This is not a job. I can’t pay (well, maybe a small amount that would be symbolic only). But I can get the right person many thousands of readers—including working journalists—some blog visibility, your name in Google, a chance to have voice in debates about the future of the press, and to plunge into Web publishing, build a brand. You would need about 10-15 free hours a week to do this well.
Also, I am looking also for a donor—foundation or individual—who might be persuaded to make a (tax-deductible) gift to NYU for purposes of sustaining and improving PressThink. The most immediate need is to pay a second contributor; beyond that I have other ideas for an expanded service that take investment. I also need a re-design.
Finally, I renew my call to professional journalists who have something to say to their colleagues in the mainstream press about the predicament of the press in the wake of the 2004 election, and in light of bigger developments all around us.
I would like to continue the examination of old think in the press, begun by ex-New York Timesman Doug McGill (The Fading Mystique of an Objective Press) and Sacramento Bee columnist Daniel Weintraub (No Longer Do the Newsies Decide.) Background to those pieces was my post: Too Much Reality.
If you have an interest in any of these three items—second author, donor, gues writer—just e-mail me and we’ll take it from there. Thanks.