So looks like Michelle Nicolosi, seattlepi.com’s new executive producer, is optimistic about the challenges-slash-opportunities afforded by the P-I’s overnight slimdown. “The creation of seattlepi.com as a standalone digital news and information business,” she writes, “is a great opportunity for us to try out many of the theories journalism professionals and academics have been throwing around for the past few years.”
Is it possible to run an online-only local news site that serves a city’s readers well while turning a profit? Is a digital news product a viable solution for cities whose papers can no longer afford to operate? We think so.
We’re going to break a lot of rules that newspaper Web sites stick to, and we are looking everywhere for efficiencies. We don’t feel like we have to cover everything ourselves. We’ll partner for some content; we won’t duplicate what the wire is reporting unless we have something unique to offer; we’ll continue to showcase the great content from our 150 or so reader bloggers and we’ll link offsite to content partners and competitors to create the best mix of news on our front page….
Our strategy moving forward is to experiment a lot and fail fast—that’s how we’ve been operating the Web site for years, and it’s been a very effective formula for growth.
We will resist the urge to be sentimental about the things we’ve always done. We have to reinvent how things are done on many fronts. Everybody on the staff is excited to see what we can do with this new mission.
So am I. I think I speak for many media watchers out there when I say to Michelle: We wish you well.Megan Garber is an assistant editor at the Nieman Journalism Lab at Harvard University. She was formerly a CJR staff writer.