Newspapers and Google want the same thing: making good content available to as many people as they can, says Ken Auletta, author of “Googled: The End of the World As We know It.” But neither one has figured out who will cover the cost to make it happen. “Google wants to get professional content without paying for it, and professional content people want to put their professional content up and get paid for it — and that will result in more negotiations.” Auletta, a media columnist for The New Yorker magazine since 1992, and Jessica Vascellaro of the Wall Street Journal’s Media & Marketing Bureau, discussed the rise of technology companies and the shrinking of the newspaper industry, at an event sponsored by the New York Press Club at CUNY Graduate School of Journalism.
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New York magazine’s print edition still has the edge over its Web site, nymag.com, in generating revenue, but its editor, Adam Moss, says that will change in a few years. “That’s not to say we’re giving up on print,” says Moss in a conversation with Stephen Shepard, founding dean of the CUNY Graduate School of Journalism. “We love print, but it seems like the print part will be a flagship of the brand — the economic power of the business will come from the digital side.” Moss, who previously was editor of the New York Times Magazine, answered questions and mused about the future of journalism in the ever-evolving media landscape.
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Addressing the 2009 graduating class of the CUNY Graduate School of Journalism on Dec. 16, Arianna Huffington, editor-in-chief of The Huffington Post, said that journalism today is as exciting and challenging now as it ever was. “Ultimately, the heart of journalism, and what I love about it, is speaking truth to power–whether it’s in print, on video, via Twitter or Facebook,” said Huffington, adding that regardless of the platform, the responsibility remains the same. “The truth about human nature–that power corrupts–and that absolute power corrupts absolutely, is as true now as it was in the time of Nero.” Huffington, also defended what some feel is a dying profession. “It’s an amazing moment. One that combines eternal traditions with all that is new and you are in a unique position to help transform it.”
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Was the financial press asleep at the switch as the biggest business story since the Great Depression unfolded? In “Financial Journalism Under Fire: Did We Do Our Jobs?” a panel discussion sponsored by the New York Financial Writers Association, four journalists tried to answer that question. “I think the media didn’t do a very good job, for a very interesting reason — lack of knowledge,” said Jon Friedman, columnist for MarketWatch.com. He was joined by Erin Arvedlund, the first reporter to question Bernard Madoff’s business strategies in a 2001 Barron’s article; CNN stock market correspondent Susan Lisovicz, and Dean Starkman, managing editor of The Audit. Former CNN financial editor Myron Kandel moderated the discussion at the CUNY Graduate School of Journalism.
Investing in green technologies will lead to a stronger economy, says billionaire financier George Soros. “The development of alternative sources of energy is where I see the way out of the global recession or depression,” Soros said at the forum “Beyond the Crisis: The Future of the Global Economy,” at the CUNY Graduate School of Journalism. Also participating: Lawrence Summers, past president of Harvard University; former Nobel Laureate Robert Merton; Thomas Stewart, former editor-in-chief of the Harvard Business Review, and Peter Thiel, president of Clarium Capital Management.