Blogging history in France

A fabulous example of language, blogging and charting history:

From an article writen by BRUNO GIUSSANI originally in the International Herald Tribune and then reported through the New York Times on January 30th 2006…. The article talks about how a group of reported from the Swiss weekly L’Hebdo covered the French riots of last year through blogging:

A Swiss magazine took the opportunity to try a new approach to online journalism, an experiment in which old media incorporated the tools of the new media.

At the height of the riots early in November, the Swiss weekly, L’Hebdo, decided to send reporters to the town of Bondy, northeast of Paris, on rotations of 7 to 10 days.

Working from a tiny room borrowed from a local soccer club, the reporters have been doing a lot more than writing their typical weekly stories for the magazine, which is based in Lausanne and has a circulation of 44,000. They have posted short and long reports several times a day, as well as photos, on the BondyBlog

Months later, the reporters are still there.

The article goes on to talk about how to talk about how the “act of blogging” actually altered their way of reporting:

The blog turned their work routine upside down. Typically, they would do their reporting, then write the main piece for the magazine, and finally perhaps, a related feature or a reporter’s notebook.

But with the blog, said Serge Michel, a world affairs editor who opened the office, “we report and immediately write and publish an initial draft, giving a first tentative shape to the narrative.” When the staff members sit down to compose that piece for the magazine, the reporters have days of this “flow writing” behind them.

Some of the reporters said the blog altered even the act of writing. In the beginning, they saw it as a nuisance, additional space to fill, but within a few weeks it became the main reason to spend those days in the neighborhoods. In addition to a dozen magazine stories, the journalists have posted some 100,000 words on the blog so far.

And then there is this little gem:

The reporters say they found a new relationship with their readers, who are invited to leave comments. The journalists engage in the discussions, and have used reader feedback as inspiration for more posts.

I invite you to read the article in its entirety (a password might be required) and to look at the reporters’ blog.

Barbara is a Lecturer in Hispanic Studies at a small liberal arts college in Maine. Rumor has it this was also her alma mater. She used to work for a small liberal arts college in the cornfields of Ohio for almost 20 years as a teacher and language center director. Prior to these adventures in higher ed she taught high school Spanish and loved it. She wishes she had more time in her life to play with her dogs, write, read, swim, do yoga things and making stuff out of clay. To see her online portfolio please click here!

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: