An old publisher of mine once said something that has stuck with me over the years: "Cheap, fast, or good. Pick two."
Now, the relationship between journos and publishers is not unlike the relationship between the cobra and the mongoose. That man was 100 percent cobra. But he was right, and here's what he meant.
If you want to publish something quickly and of high quality, you'd better be prepared to spend a lot of money. That's why daily newspapers traditionally have had enormous staffs (or used to, back in the day).
If you want to publish quality news cheaply, you'd better be prepared to take your time. You can put out a great magazine with a small staff, as long as nobody's expecting an issue every day, week, or even once a month.
If you're looking to get stuff out there as quickly and cheaply as possible, it's going to be crap. That's pretty much guaranteed.
In the 20 years since that publisher made that statement, I've thought about it a lot, and I've found only one exception to this rule. There's a burrito joint about five miles from my house that advertises itself as being "Hot Fast Cheap and Easy." They're also extremely good. That is the only example I can name of anything being fast, cheap, and good all at once.
By and large, Web publishing follows the fast and cheap model. Because I like to pick on it, let's take the Huffington Post as an example. Arianna likes to boast about how she has a staff of 148 editors, which sounds like a lot until you compare it to an operation like the New York Times, which has a staff of 1,100. Moreover, most of Arianna's staffers are wet-behind-the-ears newbies who are repackaging other peoples' stories as fast as they possibly can; the Times' staff is full of seasoned (that is, older and better paid) journalists doing mostly original reporting.
The New York Times: Fast and good.
The Huffington Post: Fast and cheap.
Mostly, though, the Web follows Huffington, not the Times, especially with sites that have no history of print publication (TechCrunch, Gizmodo, Business Insider, and so on). Fast and cheap is the rule. Even publications like InfoWorld, which I would characterize as fast and good, have been forced to cut their expenses to the bone to operate online.