NPR has an audio report on the debate about whether the Columbia Missourian, the professional newspaper produced by the world's oldest journalism school, should go online-only, partner with the Columbia Tribune, or just buck up and continue to lose a million dollars a year to sustain the "Missouri Method" of print journalism training. I blogged about this issue two months ago, when I called J-school founder Walter Williams a "change agent" and said:
It's easy when you walk through an ivy-covered campus, looking at statues and portraits of great men and women who were founders and builders and creators of empires, to drift into nostalgic fantasies about tradition and past glories. We all do it.
But those people in the portraits were pioneers, risk-takers, change agents. We don't honor their memory by clinging to what they built, but rather by understanding why they did what they did and finding new ways to apply those principles in modern contexts. Embracing the future requires learning from the past, but also letting go of it.