Are institutional memory and inertia killing the newspaper industry?
After reading the comments on a myriad of posts from journalists stuck in the past, I can’t help but think that there is no future for newspapers as long as the majority of their staffs (editorial and business) — and their collective institutional memories — are still around. Every change that is proposed, every new idea that is thought of, every staff cut that is made, is always compared to the old way of doing things.
The problem is that the old way of doing things for newspapers shares nothing in common with what 21st-century journalism is shaping up to be. What we are seeing is not a major change for the newspaper industry. It is a monumental rethinking of everything that newspapers have ever done.
This isn’t going from gas-powered cars to fuel cells. This is more akin to colonizing space.
And if you’re not prepared to colonize space, get the hell out of the way.