Respite from the media dog days of summer

Just when the summer sultry heat convinces you the future of media is the bleakest of deserts along comes something or someone that says otherwise.

There’s Michael Van Popel, who at 17 started the Twitter breaking news service Breaking News Online. Now a mere 20, he’s built a media franchise and is coming out in August with an iPhone app with a monthly subscription charge.

Then there’s controversial 55-year-old former newspaper reporter Nikki Finke.who sold her Deadline Hollywood Blog to Media Corp. last month for what the L.A. Times said was a  “low seven-figure sum” or, as others suggested, somewhere near $15 million. With her newfound cash and a long-term employment deal, she plans to add a a second reporter, one on the East Coast.

On different ends of the journalism career age spectrum and in vastly different ways, they are proving there’s a there there for digital journalism.

More effort needs to be put into innovating and finding what works than in doomed media protectionist schemes. Finding the new models will do more to get us through these dog days.