MP3 Newswire Enters Pulitzer Race

By Richard Menta 2/2/09

MP3 Newswire has officially entered the contest for this year's Pulitzer Prize. For the first time ever Columbia University, which oversees the Pulitzer awards, is allowing online news organizations to submit entries. On Friday, MP3 Newswire sent in its nomination packet under the category of distinguished commentary.

To me, the change in Pulitzer rules is a critical and positive change for journalists. Many mainstream journalists still feel that online journalists don't count as real journalists. In her article Could an Online-Only Article Win the Prestigious Pulitzer Prize?" Helena Deards writes:

The Pulitzer accepting online entries is a step that recognises the importance of online journalism in today's media, but may not sit well with heads of more traditional institutions.There is often debate about the quality of Internet reporting and the restrictions that it is, or as the case may be is not, subject to. It is often difficult for readers to distinguish between sites that are professional and well edited, or sites that may not be quite so high brow in their writing.

I'm sure the Pulitzer committee can distinguish between a well written story or commentary and one that is not. It's a meritocracy and if MP3 Newswire is to be judged it is for the words delivered on the page and not if that page is printed in ink or displayed through pixels on a screen.

Just last year online publications were not allowed to make that point. Now we are. I hope an online article or writer does win in one of the 14 Pulitzer categories. I hope several make it to the finalist round. Maybe it won't be Richard Menta of MP3 Newswire, but it should be someone so that we can start to put this silly issue to rest.

Richard Menta
Other MP3 stories:
MP3 and the Family Treasure
File Sharing and the Free Public Library

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