There’s fairly big news in the internet space today: it’s been announced that News Carson City is merging into Carson Now, combining two sites that have already had a pretty close relationship. News Carson City has been around for five years, starting as an internet version of the TV news Dave Morgan was already doing. I spotted in and wrote about it in August of 2005.
And I’m not sure if I’ve written about Carson Now here yet, and if I haven’t it’s because I’m still trying to get a handle on it. It’s a new community and news site set up by Kirk Caraway, who used to be Internet Editor and columnist for the Nevada Appeal. I know he was always frustrated with all the ways the Appeal refused to use the internet, so a few months ago he decided to leave and start his own thing. Carson Now is his stab at covering Carson City news. It started up a few months ago and I’ve been watching it since; it’s mostly an aggregation of other news sources, like the Nevada Appeal and News Carson City, and even Around Carson. They do have some original content, but it can be tough to weed through all the reposts sometimes to find the new stuff.
But it sounds like this merging of the two sites will lead to a lot more original content being posted to Carson Now, making it a more compelling destination. Dave Morgan himself is moving to Oregon, but he promises that he’ll still be on the phone to everybody in Carson City, filing stories remotely even though he’s out of state. Plus Jeff Munson, reporter for the Tahoe Daily Tribune and Nevada Appeal, will be writing stories for the site. So I can only see Carson Now growing in the future.
The real loss here is Dave Morgan and his video camera, which used to be seen all over town chasing after every story he could find. Dave’s been doing TV news in Carson City for over 15 years, and for as much as I love text there is an immediacy and an extra layer of depth that video can bring to a story. By losing News Carson City we’ll be losing an added dimension to the news. Although if you use hindsight to look back over the past couple of months, you could see this development coming. News Carson City for a while has been leaning away from the video and more heavily towards text, and even when there was a big video story there would often be a large editorial to go along with it. This was articulated in early January as Dave announced that News Carson City would be shifting more towards text, less emphasis on video. Then one month ago they canceled the TV news part of it entirely, making News Carson City a 100% online venture. You could draw a straight line from there to Dave leaving town and the site being merged with Carson Now. But at the same time, a lot of work was done on the NewsCarsonCity.com website over the past few months, changing the theme, opening up comments, and trying to build a community around that site. So it seems like maybe abandoning all that wasn’t their plan until just recently.
So I’ll be looking forward to Carson Now improving as it grows, and they’ll be continuing the “Our Town” video interview series that Dave has been doing, kind of an internet talk show. You’ll be able to find those on their YouTube channel.
I, along with many of the people of Carson City are very happy that Dave is leaving Carson City. He will throw anyone under the bus and risk someones safety just to get a news story. I think Carson will be a much better place without “newscarsoncity” or Dave Morgan.
Once I figured out Dave was a pundit instead of a journalist, it became much easier to understand his “reports.” I too would like to see Carson Now get a better handle on what it’s trying to do – at present it still looks like it just grabs whatever it can from other sources in order to get advertising revenue.