Why Newspapers Must Embrace RSS

As an aside to my post on Jeff Jarvis, Felix Salmon has a good post over at Portfolio.com. Salmon is referring to a recent report from Forrester.

The main thing I’d try to communicate to the newspaper-industry readers of the Forrester report is that RSS and blogs are not unfortunate necessities, they’re one of your brightest hopes. Few US newspapers will ever be able to compete with the NYT in terms of attracting inbound links for the nation’s biggest stories. But when it comes to local content, the field is wide open: the NYT isn’t even the best newspaper for metro news in New York City, let alone anywhere else.

So embrace the bloggers in your area, encourage them, feed them, give them full RSS feeds sliced and diced to whatever specifications they desire, and let them bring you the new generation of readers which will replace the old print subscribers who are dying out. Don’t worry if you don’t make a lot of money serving ads to those bloggers directly: they’re much more useful as traffic drivers in any case.

Interesting too are the questions of why the NY Times should be bought by Google.