FOAFs As Tools

[This item was originally posted to The Media Drop]

Last night I joined my first online-networking system, LinkedIn. I figured it was worth just checking out, even if I stopped using it after a while. I’m not a big fan of them, as people use it for too much of the online dating type stuff, which is fine, but seriously – leave your house once in a while.

I see the FOAF (Friend of a Friend) following to be quite useful if you are able to a) actually access the system, and b) find a network of individuals which you can actually reach out to and utilize, whether for finding a job, finding a candidate for a position you’re looking to fill, or, in my case here, finding folks that would be willing to give their insights and inputs in a short interview for the site.

So, I figured I’d give it a whirl, signed up, and searched a little bit to see if there was someone worth doing a short interview with. I sent a message out to him through the system, and woke up today and was happy to see a positive reply – so I’ll hopefully have one short interview put together for the site in the next week or so, and can go from there.

So, the question is – are FOAF-type systems good for you, or are they another tedious trend that will go the way of nehru jackets?

What Makes A Good Blogger?

[This item was originally posted to The Media Drop]

John Robb thinks he knows what you have to do to get a “hot weblog”.

I think it’s kind of unfortunate that he groups people who are thinkers and topic owners as “second tier” bloggers, though. Following this theory, do you just have to “connect” to a lot of folks through your blogroll, “drop names”, like “I saw Lileks post this today” and “man, Instapundit and I agree on this”.

I’d have to say the way he describes ideologue, as “people that support a single cause with unquestioned faith” makes me feel just like “voice of outrage/affirmation” per a more general definition. Being “voice of outrage” doesn’t mean you have to “critique others as often as they can or are on the bandwagon,” I think that’s silly. I think you can be a voice of outrage and be in full support of a single cause with unquestioned faith. So those two I have a total issue with.

I’m not sure this is the way it’s supposed to work – it’s about content, how you present it, and if you’re clear, amusing, firm in your beliefs, and just an all around consistent blogger, you can be successful. If all we ever did was read 10 or 20 blogs that people talk about regularly, it would be a pretty darn boring thing to do, wouldn’t it? Of course it would! That’s why you are always reading up on new things, clicking on links in comments, etc. It’s supposed to be a discussion, not yet another medium where a “talking head” is speaking to you and you are there only to listen. Blogging is a tool to be used by anyone who wants to play along and give their two cents. Not by the “chosen few” who are following some formula to win a popularity contest.

[via BuzzMachine]

NYMag Media Guy Says Bye-Bye!

[This item was originally posted to The Media Drop]

I was just perusing the NYTimes through bloglines and came across this front-pager, “Michael Wolff to Leave New York Magazine for Vanity Fair“.

Wow – pretty big deal. It seems to be expected, according to the article, after Wolff and a group of investors didn’t win the recent bidding battle over Primedia’s one-thought-of gemstone, New York Magazine. Wolff will be heading over to Vanity Fair, as of this March, and will definitely add to some of the problems that have come up in recent times at NY Mag.

So it looks like this will be Wolff’s last column, most likely, at New York Magazine, a somewhat melodramatic sendoff of the political race that is this year’s Democratic primaries, where he all but crowns names George W. Bush as the winner of the upcoming elections later this fall.

We should all be able to write eight columns a year and three “long features” to boot. And get paid handsomely.

Do you read the paper?

[This item was originally posted to The Media Drop]

After reading this article over at Reuters entitled “Most US consumers get local news from papers-study”, I got to thinking…. Is that for real?

I have gotten to the point where the *only* print medium that comes across my desk or couch cushions is Sports Illustrated. Oh, and we get the Sunday paper at home, but I never really read it – we clip all the coupons and go from there – believe me, what it cost us for a year’s worth of Sunday papers is maybe 1 trip to the grocery store’s worth of coupon savings.

I read the Wall Street Journal online (contrary to their repeated attempts to “supplement” my reading online with the print edition…I don’t get it.), and check out tons of blogs and read newsfeeds like there is no tomorrow.

And yes, I do read “newspapers” in that way. What I can’t tell from this article about the study is if the surveyors counted *online* newspapers. If so, then I’ll agree with it. But the way it reads, it seems to mean the print edition. Sure, commuters on trains/subways/buses make up a large portion of the readers, at least in major metro areas, but 61%? Wow.

[via iwantmedia]

Welcome!

[This item was originally posted to The Media Drop]

Well hello there, and welcome to The Media Drop.

I’ll give a brief overview of what’s going on here, and from there it’s up to you what comes out of it. I’ve always had an interest in hearing from various folks in the media, such as television and radio broadcasters, journalists, and especially bloggers. What makes them tick, what they are into, and why they have such focus on certain topics, all the while attempting to stay impartial whenever possible. Since these folks are people too, they obviously have feelings and opinions that they aren’t really supposed to be sharing in a piece, unless they are op-ed individuals or some of the blogger-pundits you read. I’ve always been curious to be able to talk to some of these folks, and hear what they have to say.

So I figured I would share this idea with everyone, see if I can get some folks to do an interview or six with me, and go from there. I’ll take ’em however I can get them. Email, telephone, instant messaging device, SMS, whatever. If you’ve got suggestions or know someone who might be interested in getting interviewed, please send them to me at tom@themediadrop.com anytime.

I’m also just interested in covering the media as a whole – evolution, branding, corporate structure, among other things. So I’ll be intermingling interviews (fingers crossed) with just regular coverage of that kind of stuff.

Otherwise, look for this site to get a little more done up and prettified in the days and weeks to come. At the moment I’m concerned about content, which is, of course, king.

So here goes!