The Data Port is going to be covering the development of Tucson Citizen.com as it transforms itself from a newspaper site to something entirely different. Exactly what, how different, and whether it's worth the while, remains to be seen.
News junkies and others interested in the destiny of journalism should take an interest in this transformation as it offers us a laboratory case study of what I suspect will be happening more frequently in the future.
An entertaining little wrangle popped up almost immediately when Citizen.com editor Mark Evans wrote: Reports of the Tucson Citizen's demise greatly exaggerated.
This generated the following exchange between Evans and Arizona Public Media reporter Robert Rappaport.
This morning, driving in to work at the TUCSON CITIZEN, the rip-and-read Arizona Public Media reporter said the Tucson Citizen was shut down.
If I was editing those reporters, I would have changed the copy to say "the Tucson Citizen has ceased printing a newspaper but continues to have an online presence and a skeleton staff."
The lights are still on. The computers still work. The site, TucsonCitizen.com is still up. We may be a work in progress, but we are still at work.
Arizona Public Media HAS mentioned the online site, but it was not included this morning, except I did say the "PRINTED EDITION." Let's face it, Gannett is keeping the name, but the Tucson Citizen is dead. The website is nothing more than a self-serving blog with built-in "viewers" from the previous newspaper site.
Heck, I even have a blog and talk about your site. Perhaps you should read it. FYI...the free promotion stories for this website are done, although I really do wish you good luck.
Robert Rappaport, Arizona Public Media
The Star, the AP, you and others have mentioned in previous news reports and some on their blogs, that Tucson Citizen's web site continues.
Thanks for that.
However, in your news report this morning you inaccurately said the Tucson Citizen is "shut down." That's wrong. For the listeners who may not have heard your previous reports or read your blog, you've now misinformed them about the status of TucsonCitizen.com
If you wanted to editorialize and say "effectively shut down" or relay any of your above opinions about what's left here, that would have been fine, as long as your listeners knew it was opinion and not news.
Additionally, I didn't know that reporting the news on Arizona Public Media equaled "free promotion stories."
In the interest of fairness, I suppose I shouldn't have called you "rip and read." I take it back.
Now, will you treat us fairly in the future?
Mark Evans originsal story here
The Comment Thread here