If I Ran a Newspaper….
Jeff Jarvis

The fact that you can’t distill your ideas into a simple pitch — or just a paragraph — means you really don’t have an idea, just a bunch of interesting thoughts.

So you are right, you will not be running your own newspaper anytime soon.

Journalism is not necessarily at peril — although readers certainly want the essence of their stories delivered in a shorter, more digestible format. (See The Skimm or even Buzzfeed type services.) Community interaction and actvism is all good.

Nevertheless, the issue remains: how do you pay for all that?

There was a time when newspapers could have saved themselves — and perhaps still could — if they had responded to the site that stole about 40% of their income, Craigslist. Classifieds were newspapers’ bread and butter (remember, “I found my job in the New York Times!”) All newspapers have to do is provide verification and transaction guarantees and they can recover a significantt amount of their classified ad business.

They have an opportunity now that Craigslist has become infested with organized scams and other rip-off artists.

There are other ecommerce possiblities but unless they — or you — identify the one that grabs the public’s attention and turns this around, they are likely to scatter and fail.

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