Saturday, May 4, 2002

The NY Times Misses the Point

At Large in the Blogosphere. Blogs — online news commentaries written, usually, by ordinary citizens — are the antidote to the blow-dried anchor and the unsigned editorial. By Judith Shulevitz. [New York Times: Technology]

I can’t help but think that this article in tomorrow’s Times misses the point entirely. I am both a blogger and a journalist (I’ve co-authored a column on law and technology for the ABA for eight years, and have written several books about the same). I don’t see the blog as anathema to my columns, nor do I see the columns as more authoritative than my blog.

They’re different media, with different purposes. With my columns, I know my audience. The publications I write for have target demographics. With my blog, I don’t have a clue. And it doesn’t matter. The blog is where I can digress, chase an idea, or explore a new subject. Blogging has made me smarter – and it has introduced me to people I didn’t know before but am glad I do now. Blogging is both more intimate – e-mails are easy to send in reply, comments easy to leave on a page – and more dispersed (Google is a wonderful matchmaker, delivering countless people from all over the globe to my site).

Ironically, I started blogging because I was writing an article for the ABA, and stumbled on John Robb’s blog. I was intrigued, and explored the blog at first out of curiosity. After a few weeks, I was hooked. The weblog is as exciting to me today as the browser was in ’93 when I first saw Mosaic. I can’t imagine being online without it.

And it will make my articles better – more informed, more aware. Why the need to position bloggers and journalists as enemies?

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