Brian Fuller's blog on the media, marketing and content creation

Lemann’s "revenge" (?)

Posted on | August 11, 2006 | No Comments

Well, not really revenge so much as staying in tune with one’s public philsophy… Nicholas Lemann, who penned a pretty pungent critique of citizen journalism in the New Yorker, is back in the news already. His critique in the New Yorker didn’t entirely dismiss grass roots reporting which is sprouting thanks to the Internet but slapped it around pretty convincingly. A lot of his arguments have merit.
Well, in today’s New York Times the fruits of his philosophy are emerging. Two editors on the Columbia Journalism Review’s online organ,, are quitting because Lemann is moving budget back to print.
Regarding online’s lack of profitability (the reason behind the funds shift), Lemann said:

“I have the same issue that everyone else in journalism has, and this is our best lunge toward a solution.”

There is a certain buffer zone that operations like the Columbia Journalism Review can operate under, but in the end they aren’t charities. None of us is. Lemann deserves kudos for going not only with his gut but with his head.

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