Blog Post

USC Pulling the Plug on OJR; Romenesko’s Days Of Glory

After a decade in operation and among the first publications to cover online journalism profession, the Online Journalism Review, at OJR.org, is closing down. The site had been a shell for the last few years anyway, so this brings a closure to it. Its owner and funder University of Southern California’s Annenberg School for Communication decided to focus its energies on the Knight Digital Center instead, it seems. (Our co-editor Staci D. Kramer wrote a column for OJR, charting the course of online journalism in the post-bubble years.)

Speaking of non-profit pioneers in online journalism coverage, Portfolio has a column by Howell Raines about Jim Romenesko and his media news blog/site under Poynter, and posits that the site is past its prime, with younger journalists looking elsewhere for trade news that is intentionally satirical and loaded with political spin and contempt for the bosses (sites like Gawker and others). “Traditionalist critics view Romenesko as the guy who opened the first and biggest hole in the sacred wall between news and gossip in reporting about the media. The newer media blogs, however, see him as being confined by passé, self-imposed rules, such as his steady refusal to make his own website into a political soapbox and post the most extreme commentators from the alternative press.” That may be true on the readership side, but not sure I agree with Raines, from a business lens…let the other blogs go through one deep recession, then let’s see who comes out on the other end.

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