CINCINNATI (TDB) -- Word is all over the continent that the San Francisco Chronicle is chronically ill and more gloomy news for the newspaper business is going to be coming from the city by the bay. So what should be done? Some are blaming journalism professors, and say the academics are way behind the news curve and haven't embraced blogging and bloggers, don't understand how to ride technology waves, and have been running mossback programs geared to a century (the 20th) that has passed. The contention is that today, everyone is a journalist.
There is probably more than a grain of truth to that. Does anybody know of a journalism prof in Ohio who regularly blogs on current events? Are they pushing editors to innovate, try creative forms, catch the wave? If it is happening in Ohio, I'm not aware of it. And the big metro dailies in Ohio are just as sick as those everywhere else. So why aren't the j-schools hotbeds of innovation and leadership for the industry? Why don't the profs support, nurture and roll out ideas? It happens in medicine. It happens in engineering. It happens in computer science. It happens in agriculture, where if you check the patents you can find Ohio scientists have developed new varieties of everthing from apples to elm trees to genetically engineered hogs.
From the bay area comes this missive -- wondering, too -- why the journalism schools are barren places when it comes to ideas for journalism reform. The solution offered: "Embrace and extend," watchwords in the tech business that have yet to find their way into newsrooms.
[UPDATE: PsychoBillyDemocrat has some wise additions, and considers the implications of further shrinkage in the newspaper business. Redhorse's bloodlines are in print, so take stock of his views.]