The Now/ledge

A Guide to the 'Now' Revolution in News / by Alan Soon

Why Tumblr?


I’m in the process of moving thenowledge from WordPress to Tumblr. Let’s get this straight: It’s not about the themes or how this service is more conducive to “microblogging” (or laziness, depending on how you look at it).

I want to learn more about what it means to create conversations seeded by microblogs. WordPress isn’t particularly strong when it comes to building communities. And more than ever, I think the news industry needs a better understanding of communities and how to shepherd them.

There’s been a lot of head-scratching in recent weeks after several media companies (The New York Times, HuffPo and The Atlantic) started Tumblr accounts of their own. It’s not clear yet where microblogs fit in their community strategy.

In a more interesting development, Mark Coatney, who ran Newsweek’s Tumblr blog, announced this week that he was moving to Tumblr as a “media evangelist.” He said wanted to make sure that other journos had the right tools and training to grow communities.

“I understand that journalists can’t spend all their time responding to readers,” he said in an interview with Poynter Institute. “But at the same time, they can’t ignore them either, especially when the tools to interact are getting better all the time, whether it’s on Tumblr, Twitter, Facebook, or, hell, Dogster.”

What do you find appealing about Tumblr?

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