If you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em:
NEW YORK, Jan 17 (Reuters) – The number of people reading Internet blogs on the top 10 U.S. newspaper sites more than tripled in December from a year ago and accounted for a larger percentage of overall traffic to those sites, according to data released on Wednesday.
Unique visitors to blog sites affiliated with the largest Internet newspapers rose to 3.8 million in December 2006 from 1.2 million viewers a year earlier, tracking firm Nielsen//NetRatings said.
U.S. news organizations are increasingly calling on their reporters and editors to write news blogs and compete with the expanding Internet format for informal analysis and opinion.
It is one of several tactics they are using to keep readers who can choose from a flood of competing information sources on the Internet.
One wonders if newspapers are attracting more readers to their existing blogs, creating more blogs that are building their own readerships or both. (Via Romenesko)
UPDATE: Jeff Jarvis: “Note also that the definition of blogs is up for grabs. Many times, newspapers use blogging software as a means to get up news updates and such… But not all these blogs link out in conversation.”