Movies like His Girl Friday and All the President’s Men certainly make working at a newspaper look glamorous and exciting. But you know what doesn’t? The New York Times’ new TimesCast Web videos of its daily editorial meeting—which achieve the remarkable combination of being both boring and fascinating.
The videos show top members of the Times staff discussing the stories developing that day. It’s meant to be a super-modern gesture toward openness and transparency. Unfortunately, not all the journalists assembled are, shall we say, TV-ready; the cameras might be the cause of some appearing extra stiff. And as inherently interesting as it might be to peek in on the Paper of Record’s process in almost real time—each recording goes up a little over two hours after the meeting ends—the videos don’t exactly dispel The Times’ image as uptight and stodgy. But regardless, it’s an intriguing step in the alternately heroic and goofy struggle by newspapers to stay relevant in the electronic era. Now if only they had Robert Redford and Dustin Hoffman on staff...
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