Ten Things Howard Fineman Needs to Know About Writing on the Internet
Newsweek's Howard Fineman is joining the Internet's Huffington Post! He is very excited about becoming an Internet writer. But, clearly, there are a few things he needs to know about writing for an Internet blog, as opposed to a magazine.
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Fineman told Keith Olbermann tonight that he's excited about his move to the Huffington Post because:
If I'm going to still cover politics, which I would love to do as long as I live, I've got to understand not just the internet, but social networking. Obama's campaign was a facebook-based campaign. The Tea Party is a twitter-based campaign. It's hashtag politics. Social networking is what Huffpo does in addition to reporting..."
Hey there Mister Fineman! Welcome to the Internet! Here is what you need to know to stop sounding so old:
- "Hashtag politics" may impress your magazine buddies, but this is not going to fly on the Internet.
- You used to have fancy off-the-record lunches with Barack Obama. People who write on the Internet don't do this. (Eat lunch.)
- Anyone who talks about wanting to "understand the Internet" never will.
- Copy editors don't exist on the Internet. Make sure all of your prose is perfect the first time around, like we do.
- If you mention our stories, you better not forget to link to them! That makes us soooo mad.
- You will probably write your own headlines for the Huffington Post. Make sure you CAPITALIZE random WORDS and put (PICTURES) or (VIDEO) after all of them, like so: "Will JOHN BOEHNER be the next SPEAKER of the HOUSE? (PICTURES) (VIDEO)"
- Your last tweet was "An exhausting 48 hours and I have nothing to say!" No one ever says anything on Twitter, but you can't just give the game away like that.
- You always talk about "calling" this Washington insider or that. You don't "call" someone on the Internet. You "gchat" them.
- Start a Tumblr to offload all of the funny things you think of during the day but can't fit into your posts.
- Now that you write on the Internet instead of in a magazine, people are actually going to be reading you. Are you sure you can handle the pressure?