James Fallows responds to feedback on his recent cover story for The Atlantic; read the full response (and seriously consider subscribing, if you’re not a subscriber today; imho it’s a great publication).
There is a wider variety of reaction to my current article (I've got to say it: subscribe!) than I can deal with in any comprehensive way at the moment. For now, a restatement of a central theme, then two reader dissents.
If there is a point that, above all the others, I wanted most to convey in this article, it is not "everything is going to be OK" or "Google is our friend" or even "here comes a torrent of new advertising money!" Rather it is a cultural/attitudinal argument about the press and everyone who cares about it. Far from being autumnal and despairing and mournful about a supposed golden age that has passed and fatalistic about the doomed state of public information and the resulting lapsed state of society, people who care about the media should (according to me) recognize that technological upheaval, and the resulting business shifts and forced individual innovations, have been the norm rather than the exception in our enterprise. Clever and ambitious people, especially but not only young people, will find new ways to do the work a society needs of them -- and to make a living while doing so. There will be parts of a future press establishment that will be worse than what we know now. There will be parts that are better. That is how it has always been.