How The New York Times Edits Blog Posts

a10349.jpgWe’ve always heard, anecdotally at least, that The New York Times has strict editorial guidelines for its many blogs. You know, things like each post gets read by multiple editors before it goes live. (Isn’t that contrary to the whole spirit of blogging? We just throw whatever we damn well please up.) [Editor’s note: We kid.]

Anyhow, we were interested in the truth, so when we interviewed the TimesMotherlode blogger and Life’s Work columnist Lisa Belkin — who will moderate mediabistro.com’s Women’s Magazine Dinner next week — we asked her:

How does the blog work? Do you have editors who you work with to figure out topics?
Yes, there are two people who I work with daily. Megan Liberman is the content editor, so I’ll bounce ideas off of her. We’ll decide what has legs on any given day. Then I write and send it to her. She looks it over and sends it to Jeff Delviscio, who is the tech person. This is all brand new to me. There is an immediacy to it that is exhilarating and terrifying. I can write something at 8 a.m. and it can be up by 8:30 a.m. if things go well. It’s lightning speed. And then there’s feedback, which isn’t brand new, but it’s constant. So I’m learning.

Well, that explains everything. After the jump, Belkin discusses the future of her blog.


Where are you finding [these parenting writers]? Is it more on the sites of mainstream publications or on personal blogs?
Both. I actually spend a lot of time on blogs that maybe nobody else has heard of. There are women out there exploring their lives, often anonymously, which is one of the fascinating parts of this. It allows moms who have something to say — they are mostly moms, although there’s a growing daddy lit, if you will, that is much more recent — [to say it]. Women who were going through this life-altering experience of parenting were doing it in this relatively isolated way and some of the most interesting blogs are their stories without their names, so they can be completely honest. There are a lot of pseudonyms out there.

When you find one of these writers, what do you do? Does it spawn ideas? Do you contact the blogger?
I haven’t done anything. What I hope to do is reach out to a lot of these women and bring them onto my blog and make it more of a community there. Again, I’ve been at this for three weeks, so that’s one of the things I haven’t quite gotten to do yet.