Nobody in Journalism Has a Career Plan Anymore

A blog about politics, sports, media, stuff
Dec. 16 2010 3:53 PM

Nobody in Journalism Has a Career Plan Anymore


Well, that scary spell when hardly anyone in journalism was hiring anybody for anything sure seems to be over. Through

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today comes the news that Tim O'Brien, the editor of the New York Times' Sunday Business section, is leaving the paper to

. This follows yesterday's news that David Shipley, the Times' deputy editorial-page editor, will be leaving to edit a newly launched

.



Also Pulitzer-winning fashion writer Robin Givhan is

—the most perfectly congenial home for her Who Would Really Wear That? school of criticism—for Newsweek, which is to say, the print arm of Tina Brown's Daily Beast. There she'll be joining Howard Kurtz, who

for the Daily Beast in October, before the website had even merged with Newsweek.



All of which is to say: huh? Old media are being raided by new media, but new media are copying old media, and Mark Zuckerberg is Time magazine's

, or should that be the other way around? Gawker would like to

. Huh?



The money is coming back, but the career currency has completely collapsed. The old certificates of status—a masthead spot at the Times!—are like Confederate banknotes or ownership shares in a tulip-growing syndicate. People say Bloomberg doesn't even have cubicles. Is this what people want? Are people going to the Beastweek because it is the future, or because it is Newsweek, or because it is Vanity Fair in 1985? Are people going to the Huffington Post because—no, why is anyone going to the Huffington Post?


Tom Scocca is the managing editor of Deadspin and the author of Beijing Welcomes You: Unveiling the Capital City of the Future.

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