I was shocked to learn recently that WKRN had decided to pull the plug on Nashville is Talking. In my three years in Nashville I have continuously been impressed with Christian Grantham‘s talent at keeping this valuable un-news site alive. I use the term un-news only because it was so original and different than what other stations were doing. Now many are trying to do the same or similar.
What troubles me here also is that the new General Manager, Gwen Kinsey, made blogging sound like a thing of the past in her final NiT post:
Nashville is Talking was a bold step into media 2.0 by WKRN way back when.
I say way back when because if digital technology is teaching us anything it is that specific platforms, unique technologies and the next cool thing all are born reach maturity and fade or evolve in what feels like a nanosecond of time.
NIT in its infancy introduced individual blogging to our mass media vehicle. The site generated buzz, a fair amount of regular readers and a provocative discussion about what role new media might play in the future of mainstream media. It was fun and it was messy. Our community’s level of sophistication with social media has taken off. NIT is a quaint reminder of how we all got started. Now, we find ourselves using Twitter, Facebook and live streaming to enhance our connections with our viewers in ways that blogs do less and less. It’s time to move on.
As of this Friday, NIT will go dark.
Thank you to all who helped pioneer NIT.
General Manager, WKRN
By not blogging you are giving up the right of ownership of your content. If you solely depend on free, third-party services like Twitter and Facebook you’ll end up regretting it one day.
I’m not saying that you shouldn’t use Twitter and Facebook, hardly! I love these services! But it’s crucial that you remember that should they go down or disappear everything you place on them will also be gone, this includes your contacts. How will your community find you again? How will you find them?
I think this is a big mistake that Kinsey is making marching WKRN into the future. Content and community are everything, so keeping them connected makes sense to me. Alas, NiT will be missed.
I want to thank everyone who made Nashville is Talking what it was and wish them all the best. I am excited to see what will come next from such visionaries as Grantham, and NiT founders Mike Sechrist, Brittney Gilbert and Terry Heaton.
Nashville is Talking was the place for that, a central location where a diverse group of people sharing the same bit of virtual ground could come together to be pissed off and amused, enlightened and infuriated, touched and disturbed.