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All content © 2002-2005 Anne Zook

February 18, 2005
Mixed Emotions

Hewitt characterizes the "Wall Street Journal's Op-Ed sheet as a "center-right" publication? What planet is Hewitt living on? (Forgive me...I'm always shocked when something draws my attention to how right-wing part of the country has become.)

Anonymous Wall Street Journal Op-Ed characterizes bloggers as "amateurs"? Well, some of us are and some of us aren't. And of those of us who are, and aren't, a fair amount of us are putting our names to what we write, okay? Good, bad, and stupid...I have the courage to put my name on everything I write.

Anonymoust WSJO-E slams "Internet and talk-show crew"? I'm assuming they don't mean the entire internet but let's set that aside for a moment and contemplate the bitterness of that attack on talk shows.

Just who is the WSJO-Emad at, anyhow? Because most of the talking-head news programs are virtually overrun with conservatives of the type who probably sleep with the WSJO-E sheet clutched to their sticky chests. I can only thnk of one which isn't. (Go Daily Show!)

(I note that talk radio, the actual location of a lot of unprofessional witch-hunting pretending to be "news", got a pass. I assume that's because those high-profile talk radio shows make the WSJ's Op-Ed Squad look "center" Right.)

Anyhow. Topic.

Some of us amateurs have standards, just as some "professional" hotmilitarystud.com journalists do not. *

(Not so much me with the "standards", what with the occasional name-calling, but many of us have high standards. And there's a huge pool of "amateur" bloggers whose credentials in their areas of interest would put most journalists to shame. As, I hasten to point out, Hewitt does go into detail about.)

Also? I'm thinking that any publication who regularly prints Noonie's gushings should be keeping a lower profile on the whole " good judgment and sense of proportion" thing, okay? (Remember the whole "Bush in Superman's tights" column? The one that told us more about Noonie's fantasy life than anyone wanted to know? Someone's "good judgment" said publishing that would elevate the tone of the publication?)

Ahem.

Amateurs, professionals, whatever, okay?

#1 - The fact that people aren't getting paid doesn't mean they aren't producing accurate, informative, thought-provoking content.

#2 - If the national news media was doing what we wanted them to, maybe a lot of us wouldn't have felt the need to start blogging.

#3 - Mind yer own business. You don't own the news, boys. It's public. If people would rather talk to each other than sit at your feet and listen to Jovian pronouncements of dubious honesty? That's our right. You stopped being untouchable long before you talked about Fox's "Fair and Balanced" News without so much as a snicker. You thought we didn't notice the difference between reality and what you told us...but we noticed. We always noticed.

Plus which, what with that whole democracy and free speech thing? Maybe you need to figure out, and fast, that that million people who heard and disliked your slant on a story a decade ago? Have a way of telling you so today. It's called Freedom of Speech.

In my job? If my "consumers" (clients) speak up and say I'm telling lies and doing sloppy work and generally incompetent? I get fired.

I'm not sure I see why journalists should think they're entitled to be treated differently. (Especially considering the sad state of trash that passes for "journalism" in most places these days.)

Having said that...let me say that I agree with the WSJ Op-Ed piece to a certain extent. Not so much their attack as what I perceive to be some of the fundamentals of their argument.

**Should any professional figure who makes a remark that, taken out of context, seems really inflammatory be fired/asked to resign? No. Context matters. (My opinion? CNN has wanted to get rid of Jordan ever since he made that remark about suppressing info coming out of Iraq to appease Hussein.)

Should a journalist who prints something that proves to untrue, be fired/asked to resign? Not necessarily. Not the first time, if there's any indication (s)he made an honest error. (Dan Rather? A memo that was alleged fraudulent, but not proven to be? Who cans an employee after decades of service for that? Only a corporate leadership anxious not to offend an overbearing and dictatorial administration.)

The good thing about the net is that it allows many of us to add our tiny voices together to make a big impact.

The bad thing about the internet is that it allows many of us to add our voices together but doesn't require us to bring our brains to the process.

I was going to have some opinions about New Democratic Leadership and why we should so totally not try to copy the Republican "model for success" but I've decided to go buy a candy bar instead.

_______________________

* Publishing a sweeping indictment of "internet and talk show" news sources and then retracting it in a different venue later, saying you only meant two people? Let's talk about "adult behavior" for a minute, because you seem to be using a different definition than the sane world.

I'm just saying. If those are "professional" standards, then I can qualify as a pro. All I need now is a HotBloggerBabes.com website and I might even make it into the White House Press Corps!


** Those among you who have never made a remark that, taken out of context, seemed damning, or who have never made an honest error based on faulty data, feel free to argue.

Posted by AnneZook at 03:43 PM


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