When it comes to Net news, small can be beautiful
By J.D. Lasica
Online Journalism Review
Everybody knows about the 800-pound gorillas of online news — nytimes.com, CNN.com, MSNBC — but there’s another group that’s contributing mightily to the craft of Web journalism: the solo, lone-wolf operation.
These outfits, each created and operated largely by one person, show that you don’t need a large staff and venture-capital seed money to do news on the Net.
What the creators of KenRadio, Kuro5hin, IWantMedia and Metafilter share is a relentless drive, a passion for their subject matter, and an abiding respect for the power of the Internet to reach thousands of readers cheaply and effectively. In the case of Kuro5hin and Metafilter, they also rely on users creating much of the sites’ content.
For news professionals or students of online journalism, all four are worth checking out.
Ken Rutkowski is something of a one-man personal broadcasting network. One of the earliest pioneers of Web radio — he has been called the Internet’s first Webcaster — Rutkowski doesn’t have any formal training in broadcast news.
“I’m a programmer and just decided to give the radio thing a shot,” he says.
“I’m more fascinated about the tech news happening outside the US. … That’s much more interesting than banner ads or the latest high tech layoffs.”
You wouldn’t know it from listening to his Webcasts. Rutkowski pulls together his daily tech news report after digesting 75 or so different online and print publications. The result is a roundup of 10 or so of the day’s top tech stories, which he delivers from his studio in Marina del Rey, California, with a radio-friendly voice, crisp delivery and personality-driven flavor — Tech News With Attitude, as KenRadio’s motto puts it.