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Big Media on Blogging

John Naughton has written an article about blogging and much to my surprise, he avoids all the usual Big Media whinging.

In fact, when it comes to many topics in which I have a professional interest, I would sooner pay attention to particular blogs than to anything published in Big Media – including the venerable New York Times. This is not necessarily because journalists are idiots; it’s just that serious subjects are complicated and hacks have neither the training nor the time to reach a sophisticated understanding of them – which is why much journalistic coverage is inevitably superficial and often misleading, and why so many blogs are thoughtful and accurate by comparison.

Third, there is the problem – not often touched upon in the New York Times, by the way – that many controversial public issues are ignored by Big Media for the simple reason that the ideological and commercial interests of their proprietors preclude it.

Read the whole article, it is good stuff!

5 comments to Big Media on Blogging

  • Harry Payne

    “The Guardian and The Observer sites are… beginning to outrank their competitors (for example, the London Times and the New York Times ) in web searches.”

    Self-puffery aside, I can confirm that I dropped the Independent web-site from my links as soon as it started charging. Too much media, not enough time, and I pay for enough of it already.

  • The Guardian and Observer simply get the internet and technology in general better than the other British papers. It shows with their internet site, it shows in the editorial content of their newspaper – their technology coverage is far better than their competitors – and it shows in things like this article that they actually get the blogosphere. (This showed in the fact that they figured out the significance of Salam Pax, published his stuff, and were the ones who tracked him down, too). The Guardian also figured out what modern typesetting and printing technology meant for newspaper design before any of the other British papers, and as a consequence the other tabloids (especially the Times) are basically clones of its design and layout.

    The paper’s editorial line on political and economic matters is so irritating that we generally all want to hurl the paper away in disgust, but there are many things the paper does very right.

  • Heartening article. What Naughton did not say enough about, though, is that print and broadcast media proceed always and in everything from private agenda to public deception. Bloggers, on the other hand, invite contradiction and are not in control of the final message the reader takes away. That is liberating for everybody and I salute all those who are brave and committed enough to put themselves on line and on the line. Thanks – and don’t give up.

  • Mike D.

    I much enjoyed the article, but I have one beef with it. Naughton writes “This is why the US mainstream media has wound up misleading its audience about Iraq and the ‘war’ on terrorism. The fact that most US citizens believe a majority of the 9/11 hijackers were Iraqis rather than Saudis is a case in point.”
    I suppose it’s not impossible most Americans believe this, but I’d be a bit surprised. There has been plenty of discussion about the “15 of the 19”, various theories floated about the Bush family’s relationship to the Saudi royal family, etc. In any case, the media here (pay attention now, I rarely defend these guys) isn’t misleading anyone on this particualr point. (I know Naughton must just hate when a media organ is misleading.) Great article otherwise.

  • No doubt the writings of Tom Paine, John “the Devil” Wilkes, and even the Federalist Papers were also considered “an epidemic of vanity publishing” by their betters at the time.

    Blogging IS a “glorious outbreak of free expression!” — something the attacks only prove.

    Thanks for the link to this great story!