Tuesday, January 27, 2004

Bloggers to Take On Traditional Media?

The blogging phenomenon is indeed that - and it is quickly gaining influence in the traditional media world. As with most internet movements, some people are quick to write off the legitimacy of anything so radical - shoot, sometimes it's the bloggers themselves - but I'm not convinced yet. One of the primary arguments that the Blogosphere (refers to all bloggers, collectively) will never be able to compete with 'Big Media' is that bloggers simply don't have the resources and breadth to cover live events - news - in the way traditional media does. I would argue that this plays to the Blogosphere's strengths - worldwide representation, ability to reports on events, live, from almost anywhere in the world - from the biggest events to the smallest. Already there are all sorts of ideas popping up in the blogging world - from news aggregator sites to blogs which accept input from more than one author. These institutions will take time to grow and mature, but one might eventually act as the Associated Press of the Blogosphere, one the UPI, etc.

Picking up on the concept of 'source reporting' - that is, bloggers having an actual presence at live events where things are happening, as opposed to just critiquing articles from the mainstream press, here is a small sampling of the types of source reporting (or live commentary) that the Blogosphere has been responsible for - some recent, some not:

It's not a brilliant list, I know, but the real-time/live blogging thing is picking up all the time. Sometimes the role is filled by real reporters, like Kerry Sipe covering the John Allen Muhammed trial. But even big media has limited resources - that's where bloggers can fill in.

For an interesting discussion on the emergence of the Blogosphere from some of its most prolific authors, listen to this Minnesota Public Radio broadcast.

Historical link to article in the USA Today that launched blogging into the mainstream consciousness (article is topheavy with right-wingers).

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