A Tale of Two Sites

This is just a quick post to share something I found very interesting and well written — even if it does come from the (fake) Secret Diary of Steve Jobs.  The post, “Why the mainstream media is dying” shares a tale of how the blogosphere can go after a story unencumbered, while someone as powerful as the NY Times can simply move right on by.  Not sure I totally agree that once the newspapers are gone we won’t notice, but I will say that the landscape is moving so quickly under our feet that we may not have time to care.  I don’t know, but I thought it was a terrific illustration of what is happening.

Every once in a while you get to see a mainstream outlet cover a story right alongside a blog, so you can put them up against each other and see why one was so much better than the other. This week TechCrunch and the New York Times photo provided just such a lesson.

via The Secret Diary of Steve Jobs: Why the mainstream media is dying.

One thought on “A Tale of Two Sites

  1. A few things:

    – I do agree with Caroline, the first commenter. If you look at the TechCrunch story and the David Rhode Times story, the David Rhode story is much, much more relevant. Which leads me to….

    – The one question I have always had about the idea of blogging taking over news is the very real question of resources. Time, for example – if it’s not your day job, can you really cover the pertinent story at the UN as much as you like? Money – can bloggers afford to pursue big stories in say Iran? People may say “but bloggers in Iran can cover the story we don’t need to be there.” That is profoundly naive.

    – I think a lot of these bloggers, not having any journalism training, are not understanding the difference between news reporting and opinion pieces. A true news story covers all angles, as much as possible. If you make a claim, like accusing a company of a scam, it IS your responsibility to dig deeper and find facts to back it up, and not let your opinion cloud this. For God’s sake, we already have enough BS out there that people believe is fact – And a sad attitude that backing up your opinions with fact is somehow elitist.

    Yes, there is a problem in the media world with biased reporting, but I don’t think it settles a thing to have bloggers do the exact same thing. And there are reporters out there at the Times, NPR, etc. who do excellent work in getting all the sources and checking their facts.

    – Blogging, Twitter, etc. is not as fail-proof as Fake Steve Jobs wants us to think. There was an AWFUL LOT of bad information bouncing around the Twittersphere/Blogosphere after the Ft. Hood shooting, long after the traditional news sources corrected them.

    – And finally, as for going after a story unencumbered, I think you very well may see libel suits coming down on bloggers in an attempt to shut them up. I have discussed this in article comment sections in the past, and I have to shake my head at some of the complete misunderstanding of communication law I see. For example, I think a lot of bloggers don’t understand the concept of proving absence of malice.

    In summary, I am somewhere in the middle here, and like you, I am not sure we would totally miss newspapers. Bloggers have done a great job in shaking things up, and many journalists will tell you, things need shaken up. But I think it’s a mistake to not respect professional journalists, what they know, and in turn, value what they contribute.

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