The Printed Blog is exactly what it sounds like
January 22, 2009 6:46 AM   Subscribe

In yet another strange marriage of media new and old, The Printed Blog launches next week. The paper will be distributed in Chicago (home of the once-great, now-bankrupt Chigago Tribune) and San Francisco, and it’s free. “Why hasn’t anyone tried to take the best content and bring it offline,” asks founder Josh Karp. What about people who don’t live in Chicago or SF? They can get the PDF … online.
posted by janet lynn (30 comments total) 2 users marked this as a favorite

A link to something that hasn't happened yet.... hmmmmm...

Blog Blue?
posted by HuronBob at 6:48 AM on January 22, 2009

Prog? Prlog? Plog?
posted by spicynuts at 6:55 AM on January 22, 2009 [1 favorite]

"Why hasn’t anyone tried to take the best content and bring it offline"

Things our friends have written on the internet in 2008.
posted by MuffinMan at 6:57 AM on January 22, 2009 [2 favorites]

I like this- having something in actual paper form is so much more satisfying than having it in ethereal internet form.

go meatspace!
posted by dunkadunc at 7:01 AM on January 22, 2009 [2 favorites]

I think there was a startup paper here in Boston that tried to do this recently. Ah, yes - Boston NOW. They folded, unfortunately.
posted by backseatpilot at 7:02 AM on January 22, 2009 [1 favorite]

The whole point of blogs, and the internet in general is to have things faster, cheaper, and more conveniently. When I read the printed news, I often find myself saying, "wait, this is yesterday's news!" because I've forgotten that people used to wait a full day before finding something out via the news.

So yeah, I don't expect that asking people to wait, pay money, and go to a store to purchase content will really fly when it's specifically stuff that happens to be the best of the Internet. We have MetaFilter for that already.
posted by explosion at 7:06 AM on January 22, 2009 [2 favorites]

Oops, missed the "free" part. So they won't be paying. Still, dealing with ads that can't be blocked, and the damage to the environment that printing and paper production cause are a "cost" of sorts.
posted by explosion at 7:07 AM on January 22, 2009 [1 favorite]

I like a "real" book as much as anyone, but this is kinda ridiculous. Online reading and offline reading are different behaviors. It's like saying "what if we could put an exhaust muffler on a horse carriage?" Sure, you can...but it's moot because what problem does it solve? (I see your horse fart joke but I'm ignoring it.)
posted by DU at 7:12 AM on January 22, 2009 [3 favorites]

The quality of blogs and the convenience of print? I think we have a winner!
posted by ChurchHatesTucker at 7:15 AM on January 22, 2009 [11 favorites]

Permalinks people, permalinks.

That thud then scream? Ted Nelson firstly rolling in his grave, then trying to inform people he's still alive.
posted by davemee at 7:15 AM on January 22, 2009 [1 favorite]

Finally! I can read about cats and Star Trek when I'm in the bathroom! This is progress, people!
posted by ardgedee at 7:19 AM on January 22, 2009

The quality of blogs and the convenience of print? I think we have a winner!

The mods can close this thread now, because no one is topping that.

Other possibilities: Frozen dinners that taste as bad as dietetic ones but have as many calories as the regular kind.
posted by Joe Beese at 7:21 AM on January 22, 2009

So, if you're not in the area, you can get a PDF of content which is already online? Not sure I see the point of that.
posted by krinklyfig at 7:30 AM on January 22, 2009

Finally! I can read about cats and Star Trek when I'm in the bathroom! This is progress, people!

I'd like to introduce you to the wifi-enabled laptop.
posted by explosion at 7:37 AM on January 22, 2009

I don't know about you guys but the internet is a scary place that should never be allowed to breach the digital physical world gap. I mean thats all that protecting us from the likes of 4chan.

person1: "Guys I have a great idea!"
person2: "Really! What is it?"
person1: "I'm going to print webpages off the internet and call it a newspaper."
person2: "Wow! I have never heard of a better idea in my life!"

Apparently they're also going to print it twice daily, not sure how well thats going to work for them. Oh wait I do, its not going to.
posted by Sargas at 7:39 AM on January 22, 2009

Somebody should take all that porn from the 'net and reprint it in magazine form. Imagine, porn in a convenient, portable package you could take with you in your 18-wheeler, hide under your mattress from your mom, or find randomly in the woods.

The world will never be the same.
posted by bondcliff at 7:42 AM on January 22, 2009

Didn't someone have a dot-matrix printer running that constantly (or for a while anyway) spewed out the RSS feed of the front page? I remember reading about it, and I think there was a video feed or a webcam, but now I can't find the thread...

That was awesome.

This? I'm not so sure. I guess it could work out. Free 'commuter papers' seem to do pretty well in some areas. There's a free one that gets handed out to riders on the Metro here in the DC area, done by the Post, that's kind of an abridged newspaper with lots of advertising, and it's quite popular. And it's got Sudoku. Apparently they must be able to turn enough of a profit on the advertising to make it worthwhile to print and pay people to hand out at the top of the escalators...
posted by Kadin2048 at 7:54 AM on January 22, 2009 [1 favorite]

I don't see this doing too well in Chicago. The Tribune's RedEye has a pretty solid lock on printed fluff you can read on the El. How can you compete with the Top 10 Celebrity Body Parts?
posted by Metroid Baby at 8:26 AM on January 22, 2009

I have to hold back at hissing at the folks trying to force the RedEye into my hands when I get on/off the El. I realize that they just have a job to do. The print re-designs of the Tribune and the Chicago Reader and the suckiness of the content within just gets me so down. I used to love reading both. Zell can bite it.
posted by mctsonic at 8:56 AM on January 22, 2009

Coming soon: your favorite TV shows available on stone tablets.
posted by Hovercraft Eel at 9:09 AM on January 22, 2009

The difference between The Printed Blog and the project that MuffinMan linked is that Things Our Friends Wrote on the Internet was an idea that actual people came up with. The Printed Blog was the product of a marketing brainstorm.
posted by roll truck roll at 9:16 AM on January 22, 2009

“Why hasn’t anyone tried to take the best content and bring it offline?” said Karp, who thinks print media is far from dying.

Why hasn't anyone tried to take the best content make it available however I want it?

Lately, I've been taking the iTouch to bed and reading a few things before drifting. Why are they making me read print or PDF?

I'd love for someone to collect essays, stories, audio, video whatever about a certain subject and host them in one spot, and then allow me to access the content however I want, be it web, rss, mobile, podcast, print or whatever. Obvious you can't "read" video in print, but having the text would be great for taking a book to the park/beach whatever.

This is a great idea, but too narrow in focus.

There are currently nine people on staff, mostly unpaid interns.

Hopefully that'll change quick.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 9:16 AM on January 22, 2009

From the NYTimes story: "The company will put commercial printers in the homes of its distributors, avoiding the circulation costs of papers with large, central printing presses."

So, the person who distributes the paper has to print out 11" x 17" sheets in their apartment and fold them all? Then go out to a CTA station and hand them out? And come back home and do it all again in the afternoon? (I'd hate to live below them.)
posted by limeswirltart at 9:46 AM on January 22, 2009

I'd just plain hate to be them. Anyone who has had a paper route as a kid and had to put the ads and flyers in the each paper whill know what I mean.
posted by Sargas at 10:00 AM on January 22, 2009

I have to go to Chicago for work next week. Maybe I'll pick up a copy of The Printed Blog. Then I'll go home and mock it on my blog.
posted by faster than a speeding bulette at 10:01 AM on January 22, 2009

The result will be just like MetaFilter - no img tag. At least until J.K. Rowling tells how to make the subjects of printed pictures move.
posted by Cranberry at 12:34 PM on January 22, 2009

How... useless.

Seriously, is this for the elderly? "I hear about all this funniness on the Intranet, but dag nabbit I can't get that The Google to work. Confoundit!"

(Huh. Apparently, I think all elderly people talk like old gold prospectors.)
posted by Drainage! at 7:42 PM on January 22, 2009

I've noticed that, when Metafilter links to The Atlantic or the New Yorker or some-such, I've had the urge to go get the magazine in question and read the article there. A computer is more convenient when you're sitting in front of it, but I already spend too much time doing that. Sometimes it's nice to go someplace else.

Someplace else. Why can't we have LOLcats there, too?
posted by JHarris at 7:48 PM on January 22, 2009 [1 favorite]

I'm interested, but I can't find their RSS feed! Help?
posted by Pronoiac at 11:37 PM on January 22, 2009

Just what San Francisco needs -- more printed free rags littering Market Street.
posted by blucevalo at 7:32 AM on January 23, 2009

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