This week we launched the tenth in our set of correspondent’s blogs, with Justin Webb's America. It seems a good time to take stock.
When Nick Robinson started his blog – which was the first of these - someone in the newsroom likened it to a kind of hotline straight to Nick's brain – because by reading it you got to find out – often way ahead of his appearance on any broadcast outlet – what angles of a story he was contemplating, and what his take on events was going to be. You still can.
There have been some fine moments on Nick's blog, most memorably the time when he blogged as he was "eyeballed" by President Bush at a White House press conference, or when he explained (in what some readers told us was too much detail) how he'd had to get from being naked in bed to interviewing the home secretary in the space of just seven minutes. Thus helping prove that blogs are even more informal than TV "two-ways" (interviews between presenter and reporter).
The other correspondents’ blogs, as they have rolled out, have each had their distinctive character – as you'd expect. Robert Peston has made a habit of setting the day's business news agenda early in the day (in a businesslike way) on his blog – he did it right through the story of the Northern Rock crisis, which he broke. Evan Davis demonstrates, in his, how to make intimidating economic phenomena friendly and accessible – like here where he talks about immigration and the labour market in terms of a question about a bus driver’s job.
And Mark Mardell, who is very attentive to comments on his blog, went to the trouble of consulting website readers about whether he should start it in the first place. Mark's Euroblog is one of the most engaging ways I know of keeping up with European affairs – it also contains an intrepid experiment in long-term reporting – tracking
every step in the lifecycle of a certain piece of EU legislation.
Responding to comments consistently across the blogs continues to be one of the biggest challenges for all concerned. There are often hundreds, and the relevant editors are almost always having to focus on the next development, and the next deadline. After all that's what we – and perhaps you – expect from them.
So that's my assessment of where we've got to. How do you think they're going? What should we do differently? Or what should we do next?