Rants & Ramblings

random commentary about culture, media, politics, technology and whatnot.


a neat application of blogging

Jay Small’s latest Sensible Internet Design e-newsletter (“Moments of Clarity at Connections” - 01/29/03) mentions a great use of weblogs in the journalism sphere:

David Reed, who runs the Web site for The Arizona Daily Star in Tucson, described how the paper puts a different sports writer every week in the arena at University of Arizona basketball games — just to blog each game. Reed’s team put an Apple AirPort base station (a wireless router) in the arena, so the reporter could roam around and submit items from anywhere in the building.

The NCAA and Pac 10 Conference, of course, have rules about this sort of thing, written so Web sites won’t steal the thunder of lucrative television and radio broadcasts. So the Star writers are limited to blogging up until seven minutes before game time, then at halftime, then again starting seven minutes after the final horn.

We’re telling the blog readers to watch the game on TV, then send questions to our reporter,” Reed said. “We’ll answer two or three every halftime.”

With the wider deployment of wireless technology, news organizations can take this strategy and apply it to all kinds of developing stories, from sporting events to trial coverage to government meetings to real-time concert reviews. Or it could even just be used in-house, where a reporter “on the scene” can let the news desk know the latest developments and someone else can do follow-up and collect all that information into a story.

This could be very cool.