Tuesday, April 26, 2005

It doesn't matter

One piece of good news is that arts journalism is being transformed before our eyes by the rise of Web-based new media�and just in the nick of time. The old mass media were and are zero-sum operations, as advocates of literary fiction have been discovering to their dismay in recent years. Allocate more space (or air time) to one topic and you have that much less space available for all other topics: novels compete with memoirs, classical music with jazz, theater with film, indie flicks with special-effects extravaganzas. Now that most of us live in one-newspaper towns, and now that newspapers themselves are struggling for survival, that�s turned into an iron law.

The Web is different: it permits you to publish a "newspaper" or "magazine" of your very own without having to pay for ink, paper, bricks, and mortar - much less a graduate degree in journalism. What it doesn't guarantee, however, is that such "newspapers" will ever be read by millions of people, or that their publishers will be able to give up their day jobs.

Terry Teachout on why it doesn't matter how big an audience is.

Souls can only be changed one by one, and each one is as supremely important as the next. Hence there are no small audiences, only small-souled artists.

So its still valuable if you are your own audience of one I conclude.

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