Blogs Colliding With Traditional Media

The tide is shifting. Corporate-owned newspapers and television
channels whose editorial positions are controlled by their economic
interests are no longer the only sources of news for truth-seeking
readers. So, toss Fox News and USA Today out the window, and let in
the bloggers. These passionate, young, would-be
journalists/activists/watchdogs who often spend countless hours
every day contributing to their own weblogs now make up 5 percent
of the 128 million Internet-using American adults. A whopping 17
percent call themselves blog readers, writes Loanna Weiss in
The Boston Globe. When it comes to the communication
world, blogging is the new black, and getting more and more stylish
by the day.

Lately, bloggers have been reaching for the next threshold in
their quest to gain acknowledgement in the journalism world. As
Weiss writes, a handful of the 15,000 coveted credentials to the
Democratic National Convention in Boston in late July will go to
bloggers — some of which, like the popular liberal site attract
150,000 readers every day. Its author, Markos Moulitsas Zuniga, 32,
calls credentials ‘a way to promote the blogosphere as a new and
genuine and legitimate media outlet.’ But these cyber-pioneers face
an uphill battle in some circles. For instance, Weiss writes, the
somewhat old-fashioned House of Representatives Press Gallery,
which takes the first look at credential requests for both
conventions, ‘decided that independent blogs do not fit their
standards of ‘media,’ and passed their applications down the ladder
a rung, to the convention staffs that handle credentials for
student and weekly papers.’

Granted, the differences between blogs and traditional media
outlets are striking. Weiss continues: ‘Outside of their links to
stories from the conventional press, blogs tend to have little
independent reporting, and more stream-of-consciousness commentary
and analysis. They are often fiercely partisan, and post links to
parties’ and candidates’ fund-raising operations.’ Unlike corporate
interests, what drives bloggers is their passion, as many spend
countless hours linking to each other, thereby meticulously
spinning the world of independent media into one giant web that not
even corporate tycoon Rupert Murdoch can tear down.
Jacob Wheeler

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Blogs Colliding With Traditional Media

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