the new front pages

Buzzfeed, which was started in 2006 by Jonah Peretti, a founder of The Huffington Post, operates on the philosophy that social media sites like Facebook and Twitter are America’s new front pages and that the content people view online is determined more by what their friends share than what is found on the home page of a news organization. As such, the distinction between Web ephemera like baby videos and traditional journalism has all but disappeared.

(Douglas Quenqua, NYT, Feb 15, 2013)

These has to be some middle ground between Quenqua's sneering description and BuzzFeed's airhead premise. "Bloggers as citizen journalists" has a quaint ring, now, but an RSS reader stocked with skeptical long-form blogs* (that link to other sources but also digest them) is still an excellent way to get news and opinion. This can be supplemented by a catch-all service such as Google News to see what a wider spectrum considers newsworthy. But we can perhaps all agree that New York Times editors have lost our respect as news gatherers and agenda setters, after Iraq, the Eliot Spitzer takedown ("ties to organized crime," they said), Adam Davidson, etc.

*e.g., Juan Cole, Naked Capitalism, Lobelog, The Big Picture