The Other Observer’s Blog

The London Observer has just put up a really excellent new blog, a mixture of links, commentary, and a kind of relaxed openness we’ve never seen in a major world newspaper.

Check out this bit, a late-night item by the executive editor that begins, “OK, there’s the first edition gone” and includes this:

“There was a bit of a rumpus with one of our leader writers who was so furious about the former Home Secretary’s inability to balance liberty with security that he called him ‘appallingly short sighted’. Luckily another of our leader team gently pointed out that he was actually blind, so we took that phrase out.”

The Observer (no corporate relation to us, though we like them, and occasionally write for them) is the Sunday sister publication of the Guardian and one of Britain’s great old papers. The new blog, along with being quite entertaining, strikes us as offering a kind of genuine media transparency that no number of ombudspeople and sober J-school evaluations can match. The editors see it as a way of opening up their “internal conversation” about everything from last week’s paper to, yes, Marmite, as they say in this funny little introduction.

We can’t quite imagine the Sunday New York Times, or any other American paper, letting a young editor and some writers loose in the newsroom like this, with occasional contributions from the big guns. (Well, we sort of can. We nominate NY Observer alum Jim Rutenberg for the editor’s job…and not just because we’re already tired of competing with him.)

Anyway, we’ll add Observer Blog to our blogroll for those days when Gloomberg becomes unbearable.