About a year ago, I decided that I needed to take a break from the web. I decided that I needed to watch as journalism took a huge step forward with the explosion of new venues for reportage like twitter and html5 on the iPhone as well as gear game-changers like the Canon 5D Mark II. But I believed that these tools were more revolutionary for the journalist than they were for the consumer. As I watched the world react, I realized that no one really noticed that journalists can now tell stories in 3lux with the 5D. It's a fantastic tool, that I use every day, but at the end of the day, most people will never care.
CNN decided that they would use twitter as a news aggregate and the public has not responded well; they are losing market share and it's embarrassing to watch veteran war correspondents read twitter feeds as though it's news. While I get frustrated when other networks intentionally smudge the line between news and editorial, it's more painful to watch "the most trusted name in news" give equal air time to responses posted on a social network as they do the report itself. It's not shared narrative, it's just flailing. No one is growing from the experience. The story and the business is just sinking in the water and expending a lot of energy and breath.
That's not to say that nothing good has come of the last year for reporting.
Amazing things have happened and I'll look forward to talking about and employing them in the future. But for now, I want to thank my wife, my family, and my friends for helping me figure out this last year. I went freelance about 2 weeks ago and it's because of them that I was able to see the path to this point.