This week I realized that the internet has won; the famous tipping point has occurred, and people (sorry; that is journalese for "everyone I know") are getting their information off the web, not from print publications. My completely-subjective evidence:
–I bought the Times the other day for two important stories, the State of the Union speech and Steve Jobs’s announcement of his new Ipad. It lies unopened. I already absorbed what I had to absorb about both stories, didn’t get to it.
–Yesterday Avi, a commenter on this site, got into it with a big Israel supporter, Smndoerksen for more than 20 comments, under another sharp post from citizen-journalist Bruce Wolman. You can see their crackling dialogue here. At one point, the two arguers switched into Hebrew. This is a new form of communication, and as James North says, a journalistic art form.
–The journalism I do read in print, like this smart piece about dogs as children, has an increasingly webby feel to it, strong point-of-view, informal style. Citizen journalism is affecting everything.
At the risk of stating the obvious, people are moving to the web because it’s more exciting, it’s completely immediate, the writers are well-informed, and you see someone’s mind in action rather than through 100 corporate filters, which characterized a lot of my labors in the MSM. People are more sophisticated about information than ever. It’s a new world.