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Age is no guide to web news enthusiasm

Support for my belief that it is not the older journalists, those who remember the smell of hot metal, that are the most resistant to putting the web first comes in an American Journalism Review article on Online scoops.

Rusty Coates, general manager of TBO.com’s converged (Tampa Tribune and News Channel8) newsroom in Tampa, Florida, tells the AJR:

As journalists, we’re kind of a curmudgeonly groups. Some react to change very well… But around the country you’ll find a handful of the “over my dead body” types when it comes to posting scoops… some of our most aggressive online people are in their 50s, and some of our least online gung-ho people are in their 20s. It may be a reflection of where they went to college, or whether they went into journalism to get into long-form journalism.

My feeling is that the rolling deadlines of the web bring back some of the excitement of the days when cities had competing newspapers and deadlines came and went in fast succession. A web first policy must be a much great shock for reporters who are used to a 10am deadline for the single edition.

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