Nostalgia for the New Century Network

Last week I heard someone refer to "NCN nostalgia." Just before the dot-boom, a bunch of newspaper companies got together and imagined an online future in which newspapers would be key players through something called New Century Network, which would be the definitive news resource on the Internet.

It all fell apart amid corporate bickering, and the inability of big media companies to cooperate was rightly blamed. But there was something else at work: technology was evolving faster than anyone's business vision.

Newspaper blogging: Is Austin stumbling out of the gate?

The alternative weekly Austin Chronicle says its rival daily American-Statesman "blunders with bland blogging" and has failed to engage the public with its public blogs, which it says have "the communal energy of the Yarborough Branch library on free beer nuts night." It's the usual alt-media sniping but there are some points to be found.

Twelve miners (not) found alive

Pretty much every conventional U.S. daily newspaper published east of the Rocky Mountains has egg on its face this morning. So do some in the west. Contrary to what you may have found rolled up in your driveway this morning, 12 miners were not found alive in Tallmansville, W. Va. Between the time the presses rolled and the time the papers were delivered, the story took a tragic turn.

This isn't a new problem; I wrestled with it for years as a daily newspaper wire editor. But the world has moved on, and newspapers have not.