The Washington Post and “writing in the Internet age”

The Washington Post

Image by krossbow via Flickr

Check out page D2 of today’s Washington Post and Dave Sheinin’s story “Putting a number on a theory” for a nice example of how media in print form can reference/recognize a blogger not on their staff. The article even has a sub-head of “Blogger argues that assertion regarding Dunn, Zimmerman is a bit off”.

The article also shows how an outlet can incorporate content from one of their own blogs into their print editions (this clearly isn’t the first time the Post has done this, just look at the top of page D2 for an article adapted from this post on the DC Sports Bog, one of the Post blogs that they regularly transfer to print).

The “Putting a number on a theory” print piece is adapted from a blog post by Sheinin on the Post’s Nationals Journal blog. It addresses a previous post Sheinin made on Nationals Journal and a follow-up blog post by a non-Post blogger, David Lint, on his independent blog, For the Love of the Nationals.

Lint, in an open letter style blog post, questioned Shinen on his assertation that the “drop [in Ryan Zimmerman’s fielding percentage in 2010] is at least partly explained by the presence this season of Adan Dunn, a below-average defender, as the everyday first baseman…” The story that runs today is Shinen’s recognition of, and response to, that post.

One of my favorite parts of the piece is when Sheinin writes, “…one of the great things about baseball writing in the Internet age is that there are plenty of folks out there who will hold you accountable…”

Building on what Sheinin said there, one of the things I love about the web and blogging is that if a writer doesn’t have time to take a story further, there’s someone else who might do that or who might come up with an idea on how to spin the story off in a different direction. And it can be great for the reader, who then has even more content to consume on a particular subject. When I think about the amount of sports content available for consumption now versus when I was a kid, it blows my mind sometimes.