David Talbot Lecture
- Started 14 minutes late
- Academia boggles Julie
- Founder, chair and editor-in-chief of Salon.com
- Subject: The Art of Survival
- Ironically, a US-related rant.
- “Nothing great has been created with only a business
- “Nothing lasting has been created without one. Wired—the
revolutionary magazine, Suck, Feed, Spy…”
- Essential mission of any new publication to dredge up the
voices that haven’t been heard. E.g. New Yorker – Dorothy Parker. Rolling
Stone – Annie Liebowitz, Hunter S. Thompson, etc.
- Wired: Explosive day-glo energy of technology and the
- These magazines defined new market niches and delivered
them to their advertisers
- What was the idea behind Salon? American culture had been
stupefied. Little for the literate American on the newsstand. Intelligence
as the new growth market.
- Newspaper that Talbot worked on was the “smart tabloid”.
- Monthly readership of 3.5 million people
- Made about 4 million dollars, and are spending 7 million
- Staff of 60 people
- Freelance budget of 600,000
- Hosting costs – couple hundred thousand
- Rent in New York and San Francisco
- Legal costs
- There are not enough advertising dollars out there to
support a Web site alone.
- A good day for Salon is more than 100 new subscribers per
- Passionate political journalism sells—the US media has
tilted to the right.
- Mr. Talbot is deeply unhappy with Mr. Bush—he’s preaching
to the choir
- Yet, the watchdog media continues to sleep, with the
glaring exception of the New York Times. Limp and fauning journalism is
the run of the day.
- Frankly, he’s not a very compelling speaker. He stutters,
pauses, and reads more or less directly from his notes.
- Salon is apparently holding the solo torch for liberalism
in the media.
- Elections are won and lost in the media.
- Their editorial mission over the next year and a half.
- Journalism is too much about merchandizing and
- “There is no more worthy job in our society to have than
- How are they spending seven million dollars a year?
- Ways to kick one’s society in the ass.
- TableTalk—reader-driven content, he’s an advocate…own the
- Didn’t have much of interest to say about weblogs
- Actively involved in creating an alternative newsstand
- It was pretty much a 45 minute, US-centric liberal rant
- 10% of Salon’s readership are outside of the US. Salon’s
American focus is the result of the dot-com bust.