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May 22, 2008


Well good for you. Nicely done. I've only been hanging around the blogosphere for a couple of months. At first I was disappointed in the quality of writing. But as I looked more widely and got to know the sites I could trust, I began to enjoy myself and to find the places and the people who write well about the things I'm interested in. This is one of them! I used to love the book review section of my city's newspapers. One of the papers cut their review section back, so I unsubscribed. Then the other followed suit. It turned out that the major reason I bought that paper was for the Art and Book Review sections. I can get my straight news more easily on my laptop without even getting out of bed in the morning. I don't find newspaper editorializing particulary edifying. Next thing you know, I unsubscribed from that final newspaper. Now I know the places I can trust for what I want and need online. I don't have to pay for it, though I hope some of those writers get paid. And I'm saving a few trees while I'm at it.
Traditional print media is not dead I hope. But they are going to have to smarten up and democratize and do lots of other things to become relevant again. There are still some niche markets out here who want and need good writing on a wide variety of topics and issues. I hope they find their way.
Till they do, I'm happy right here.

I'm honored to be one of them! I really think you're right that print media has a lot to learn from the online world--and many outlets are trying. Likewise, I think online media has a lot to learn from traditional journalism. (Like, um, fact-checking and research) But it's interesting that the Salon reviewers pshawed alternative media outlets when it is ITSELF an alternative outlet, being an online magazine. I think Salon considers itself to be a print publication digitized -- more in common with The New Yorker than, say, The Huffington Post. If these reviewers do their own best work in an online magazine, I'm not clear on what makes them suspicious of other online realms.

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  • Isak is a space to celebrate tales and truth in the curious, joyful way embodied by the writer for which it is named. The name "Isak," after all, means "laughter," as she was fond of pointing out.

    By tales, I mean fiction (especially short fiction), as well as other literary and artistic narratives. By truth, I mean the world in which we live. I especially have my eye on creative social justice.

    Isak: The Extended Version
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