marshallbioJosh Marshall says he "didn't have much sense going in of what TPM would become" when he started blogging on the Florida presidential recount at Talking Points Memo a decade ago. Neither did anyone else. Blogging didn't exactly seem like a wise career choice for a political journalist in his early 30s, with aspirations to be a long-form magazine writer.
"So sometimes I would ask myself: why am I doing this?" Marshall said of Talking Points Memo, which turned 10 years old over the weekend. "It doesn't make me any money when I'm barely able to support myself as it is. ... But the truth was that I liked it. A lot. Not only did it free me of editors, which is something lots of writers yearn for, whether it's good for them or not. But the form felt liberating too."
Marshall may have felt liberated from the trappings of a traditional news organization, but over 10 years of blogging, he ended up creating his own cutting-edge, left-of-center online news organization with staffers in New York City and Washington.
Asked about the site's greatest accomplishment so far, Marshall said he's proud of its coverage of the firing of U.S. attorneys during the Bush administration—for which TPM won the prestigious Polk Award—as well as its coverage of attempts to privatize Social Security privatization and of this year's health care reform debate.
Ten years from now, Marshall said, he expects TPM to be "one of the leading news organizations in the country covering hard news and politics" and less focused on its founder. "I find it particularly gratifying these days when I meet someone who's heard of or is even a fan of TPM but has never heard of me," Marshall said. "Or they ask me how long I've been working for TPM. In any case, I'm not sure we're quite there yet. But, yes, I do not have any doubt that TPM could and likely will exist after I'm no longer actively involved with it on a daily basis."
In the Q&A below, Marshall spoke to The Cutline about the early days of political blogging, whether blogging is still stigmatized in the journalistic mainstream, and where he sees TPM in the increasingly competitive online political journalism world.Read More »from Josh Marshall on TPM’s first 10 years (and its next 10)