Friday, June 26, 2009

A Sign of Things To Come

About an hour ago, posted a breaking story - "White House Drafts Order to Hold Some Detainees Indefinitely" - under two familiar bylines, Dafna Linzer and Peter Finn. But here's the hitch - Linzer, a former Post reporter, now works for nonprofit ProPublica, and is credited as such as the lead byline.

Under its partnership with the Post, ProPublica now shares some of its best, breaking stories - and in return, gets eyeballs routed to its site through a link to its own story that contains the deep reporting behind the breaking news (which, for the scoop-minded was posted about an hour earlier).

It's the kind of cooperation that was unthinkable - at least among newspaper types - just a few years ago. But make no mistake, it's a sign of things to come as newspapers look for ways to underwrite the cost of investigative reporting, and nonprofit startups work to build credibility, audience and, ultimately, institutional gravitas.

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