The world may be flat, as New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman has written, but I always liked to think I was standing on a hill. Now comes the news that pasadenanow.com, a local news site, is recruiting reporters in India. The website’s editor points out that he can get two Indian reporters for a mere $20,800 a year – and no, they won’t be commuting from New Delhi. Since Pasadena’s city council meetings can be observed on the web, the Indian reporters will be able to cover local politics from half the planet away. And if they ever feel a need to see the potholes of Pasadena, there’s always Google Earth.
Excuse me, but isn’t this more or less what former New York Times reporter Jayson Blair was fired for – pretending to report from sites around the country while he was actually holed up in his Brooklyn apartment? Or will pasadenanow.com be honest enough to give its new reporters datelines in Delhi (or wherever they live)?