Tug of war at BW between online edition and blogs

New battles in journalism: BW editors tussle over whether an item should be blogged or placed on BW Online.

I'll share with you a little tussle we had yesterday between the 43rd floor (magazine) and the 45th (BW online). It's the kind of issue we never faced when BW was purely paper-and-ink. (Those not interested in insidey nuts and bolts from the mag world should skip this one...)

Peter Elstrom, who edited our blog cover, wrote a piece about how investors may have made off royally from the apparently false rumors that Cisco was buying storage giant EMC. Since Peter's an editor who rarely writes these days, he doesn't have posting privileges on any of our blogs. He asked me to post the item, and I sat down to put it on Tech Beat.

But upon reading it, I said, Whoa! This thing's an online story. It's long, with magazine style paragraphs. What's more, I had a debt with the online editor. He'd asked me to turn a blog post on mobile phones into a longer online story, and I hadn't made any progress. So in part to appease him I sent him Peter's story.

But Peter still saw it as a blog item. Tug of war ensued. In the end, it's probably a wash. BW Online gets more direct readers, good blog items stir up more activity in the blogosphere. But here's a key difference. Online has editors who have channels to fill every day. No editors on blogs. So, naturally, online wins. That's why I have to come up with that phone story today. In the end, Peter's story only gave me a one-day reprieve.

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