Former Times blogger joins Guardian

After publicly announcing he was leaving The Times because he didn’t like their new paywall,
blogger Tim Kevan and his BabyBarista
blog have struck a deal with UK’s The

BabyBarista, a fictional account of a junior barrister practicing at the English Bar, will be published on The Guardian’s new law section.

In a press release, Janine Gibson, Editor,, said: “This is a great example of how we are pioneering digital innovation and openness, working both commercially and editorially with the online community through our Open Platform, rather than shutting them out.  This is just the first step towards working in new ways with talented writers, bloggers and creators.”
In the same release, Tim Kevan said: “Not only does the Guardian have what I consider to be the most vibrant and innovative online presence of any of the national newspapers but also what is now the very best law section, freely available to all. I’m particularly impressed by the way they have introduced the idea of partnering with bloggers such as myself, allowing me to retain my own website and identity. It’s a paradigm-shift away from the old-school need for ownership and exclusivity and is definitely the way forward for traditional media to harness the power and energy of the web’s creative forces.”

Kevan withdrew his Baby Barista blog from The Times, citing the publication’s decision to erect a paywall, which he says will be “a disaster”. Kevan worries that the move to paid online content signals a lack of innovation and paints The Times as a “big lumbering giant” unable to cope with online media.

Will other writers – who, above all, want their work to be seen – follow the exodus?

Editor’s Weblog points out that “The institution of a paywall does cast a rather archaic shadow on any publication that chooses to block its content. The free flow of information is a very modern phenomenon and The Times’ paywall represents a blockade on such information sharing.”

Editor’s Weblog continues:

“Kevan’s point about the paywall’s lack of innovation is an important one. While a paywall seems like an obvious answer to the media’s struggle to maintain profit while cooperating with Internet news, perhaps it is a little too obvious. Kevan’s call for online media sources to think outside of the box could be key to the future of news reporting. Like iTunes saved the music industry’s profits from the perils of the Internet, so can one innovative idea save the newspaper Industry.”