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Wednesday, May 10, 2006 

Hong Kong Media Tycoon on Blog and Newspaper

Just as Reuters is trying to exploring ways to make themselves more relevant in the new media age and looks to provide a 'spine of truth' to blogosphere, Hong Kong media tycoon, Jimmy Lai Chee-ying has just published a commentary on what he thinks is the relationship between blogs and newspapers.

I got somewhat distracted by a number of IM conversations (now you know why I don't show up in IMs that much), so I am only translating the last two paragraphs of Lai's piece tonight.

"Blog is only newspapers' critical pal," he wrote in the title of his piece.

"I don't think blog can replace the functions of newspapers. At the most, it is is only a social platform — — enables people to converse over the internet, build a mutually trusted relationship and express their views without worries. This is like chatting with one's friends in a pub. But blog is only pub-like small circle and not a media of mass communications, so how could it threatened the survival of newspapers? Blog is only newspapers' critics and not an enemy.

I have once imagined: if today it's only a blog world, and newspapers haven't been invented yet, then as a entrepreneur, what do you think I would do? I will start a newspaper. Even if the internet brings in endless flow of information, people still need an editor to help them filter and digest information, to provide them with quality and convenience. That's the function of a newspaper. Of course, I run a newspaper, I am certainly in saying that. That's why everyone should take it with a pinch of salt."

Update: ESWN has translated the entire essay into English. See also his comments on the topic.

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