Here’s the problem: Blogging takes time. Even bloggers complain that they don’t have time to blog.
Blogging also requires a leap of faith: If I write it, will anybody actually read it? And if they do, so what? Is it better to Twitter instead? Some Twitterers would argue that blogging is soooo 2007.
We killed an hour rooting around Atlanta TV websites looking for blogs. They were easy to find on WGCL’s site. They were difficult to find on WSB, WAGA and WXIA’s sites. One of the few reporters to post recently was WXIA anchor Jill Becker, who blogged about blogging:
” I haven’t been totally resistant to the new technology. I’m blogging right now—that’s something, right? But i have to wonder…are people still reading blogs? Is blogging quick enough, instant enough, gadgety enough? I wonder, almost fear, that I am technically illiterate. I want to (sort of) venture into the new forms of communication, but I’m fairly certain it will be with baby steps, one “tweet” at a time…. Would I get followers? Would anybody care?”
Here’s the problem: Not only does blogging take time, but there are other hurdles. The content has to be interesting enough to encourage the reader to return. And the posts have to be updated regularly. Otherwise, readers will forget about you.
This would help explain why Atlanta’s TV reporters have blogged rather poorly: Their jobs are too demanding. Every TV station has had blogs. WGCL is the latest station to engage in a blogging kick. Go to the “news” page of WGCL’s web site, and you’ll find the word “BLOGS” in all caps on the left toolbar. WGCL has set up WordPress blogs for some of its reporters.
Some folks may find WGCL’s blogs compelling. Mostly, they’re not our cup of tea.
Stephany Fisher tends to write straight-up synopses of her health alert stories.
Adam Murphy challenges the gag reflex by posting photos of himself with celebrities.
Kim Fettig promotes charitable causes and good works. Though she overuses exclamation marks, Fettig doesn’t overwrite and may have the most readable blog on WGCL’s site. It’s faint praise, though.
Years ago, we remember reading a blog by Jeff Dore on WSB’s web site. Dore is one of Atlanta TV’s cleverest writers and coolest dudes. We recall thinking: “Wow. I wonder if WAGA would let me write a blog that honestly examines the TV news biz?” We never asked, because experience had taught us that such stuff wouldn’t have been appreciated by the folks who assign stories, negotiate contracts and send timesheets to the payroll department.
Regrettably, WSB no longer has a Jeff Dore blog. The only blog we can find on WSB’s site belongs to weather guy David Chandley. It’s about – weather.
WAGA has bloggers, but they rarely post. Karen Graham and Mark Hayes last posted in April. Dale Russell, who has been known to post interesting behind-the-scenes stuff about investigative reporting, hasn’t posted since Thanksgiving.
Even anchor Tom Haynes, who had devotedly blogged for viewer feedback on stories, has no blog linked to his bio. Maybe it’s gone away, or we’re just too dim to find it on WAGA’s site. (Update: Just found it here. It’s called the Fox News Edge blog. It’s not linked to Haynes’ bio, but it’s on WAGA’s home page.)
Curiously, WXIA’s blogs are next-to-impossible to find on their site (though, again, it may be due to our knuckleheadedness). This is puzzling, given WXIA’s devotion to melding its TV and web presence. It appears their reporters can contribute to a combined “news” blog, but nothing that distinguishes them individually. For example, Jaye Watson has blogged insightfully about coverage of difficult stories. Want to find Jaye Watson’s blog? Good luck.
Like we said: Blogs take time. WGCL’s bloggers will probably lose interest soon as the crush of work overtakes them. And seriously, does anybody really want to read this stuff anyway?