Thursday, March 01, 2007

A Web tale from DC

Marisa Taylor, our Justice Department reporter, has developed multiple scoops on the saga of the seven U.S. attorneys sacked by the DOJ. Yesterday she had another -- the New Mexico U.S. attorney's claim that he was fired because he refused to go after a Democrat prior to last fall's election. (The New York Times credited this scoop this morning.) Marisa's editor, Jim Asher, wrote the following e-mail to the staff about the speed with which the Web makes things happen. Here's Jim:

Wednesday's day-long journalism by Marisa Taylor on her fired U.S. attorneys story reinforces a startling truism about our business. It's changed forever.

Marisa's story was posted on our site at noon. Within an hour other internet sites were touting it. Then, in what seemed like an nanosecond, members of the house and senate were opining about her story. It was read into the congressional record by Sen. Feinstein and provoked two hearings by house and senate committees on whether to subpoena the U.S. attorneys.

I tell you this, not to praise Marisa, which I do, but also to point out the kind of immediate impact our work now has.

Within minutes, stories get noticed and action gets taken.

No longer are we bound to the printing press, or to the deadlines of yore. This is an exciting development that frees us from the slow moving traditions of our industry. As we move quickly into the world of virtual journalism, hang on to your hats. This is gonna be some fast ride.


1 comment:

  1. Anonymous7:21 AM

    Would her reporting have traveled as far, and as quickly, had she not had "McClatchy" in her email address?

    What if she was a "no-name" blogger? What if she was Matt Drudge?

    What if she was wrong?

    Just some thoughts ;)