One road to TBD

Photo courtesy of
courtesy of ‘volcanojw’

We’ve heard a lot about the process of TBD heading towards launch. First it was an unnamed Politico project with Jim Brady attached, then more names were attached, then the announcement of the new name.

How about a little insight into how one of the director of community engagement, Steve Buttry, ended up at such a venture? His wife, author Mimi Johnson, penned this essay about how Butty came to walk away from the print business and  head towards the online journalism world.

I never worked in newspapers – though I considered a photojournalist path briefly – but I was a newsprint reader and loved it. I didn’t stop getting the paper daily till this year. What she had to say about what led her household to stopping daily delivery and how it impacted them mirrored my experience.

I no longer rely on an editor to pick and choose what news I will read. My news is no longer a day old. The only limit is the time I will give it. I hit links off my Twitter stream. I troll newspaper web sites. I visit all-digital news sites. Newspapers have cannibalized their product to make ends meet for so long, I’ve lost nothing in the way of quality.

It’s a  great essay. Former and current print readers will feel a resonance. Those of you who have never known anything but online might get a hint of why some of us get a little wistful for the newspapers we loved decades ago, and which seem to have been leaving us longer than we’ve been leaving them.

Well I used to say something in my profile about not quite being a “tinker, tailor, soldier, or spy” but Tom stole that for our about us page, so I guess I’ll have to find another way to express that I am a man of many interests.

Hmm, guess I just did.

My tastes run the gamut from sophomoric to Shakespeare and in my “professional” life I’ve sold things, served beer, written software, and carried heavy objects… sometimes at the same place. It’s that range of loves and activities that makes it so easy for me to love DC – we’ve got it all.