Editors as Curators

While at DPAC conference a few weeks ago for Internet Week, I checked out a few panels with fairly little interest.  However, there was a point on the “Subscriptions, Paywalls and Real Money” panel when one of the panelist said, “I see my editors as curators,” which resulted in much thought.

When I think of editors I think of Peter Parker’s boss in Spiderman.  Cigar or cigarette in mouth as loosely as their had is on their. Dress shirt with suspenders or vest.  Eyes beamed to a typewriter.  Basically…this guy.

newspaper editor

In the online space, editors do much more than manage writers.  They are in fact curators of a multi-media content experience for their readers.  They are tastemakers who use social media to go beyond their .com and connect with people.  They are their brand and vice-versa.  More than anything, they put a face to the web.

Case and point:  when you think of TechCrunch, most people immediately think of Michael Arrington as if he’s Mick Jagger to the Rolling Stones.

When you start thinking of online publishing as an experience, you realize the true thought leaders and innovators are the “editors” who are finding creative ways to reach and build their community.  And to take it a step further, bands should be curators instead of just musicians for the same very reason.



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