ll eyes in the newspaper industry are on Seattle, said Julie Moos in Poynter Online. On Tuesday, the Seattle Post-Intelligencer published its final print edition, and on Wednesday it debuted as an online-only product. It will be up to SeattlePI.com to prove that local news websites can succeed where so many newspapers are failing.
"Is the Web the newspaper industry's salvation?" asked Ed Oswald in Technologizer. "Likely not." Shrinking the Post-Intelligencer's newsroom staff from 165 to 20, and cutting out printing and distribution costs can't compensate for the big mistake newspaper executives still make online—they want to charge for information, and their readers expect it to be free.
Seattle, home to Microsoft and Amazon, is the nation's most wired city, said Jack Shafer in Slate, so the new P-I has a shot if it can reflect that "Webified glory." That means updating the homepage "as many times an hour as humanly possible," and making the site alive by letting developers experiment. Following the newsroom chief's vision, which "reads like an advertisement for embalming fluid," will spell certain doom.
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