Please, Tangle With Us
February 15, 2005
"Some quick background research on the CBS Memo scandal, the resignation of The New York Times Executive Editor Howell Raines, or the recent resignation of CNN's Vice President Eason Jordan should convince you that it's a bad idea to tangle with the community of weblogs."
Ugh. No offense to Kevin Aylward, but the conclusion that any reasonable newspaper editor would draw from the letter from which I drew that quote is that bloggers are bullying thugs.
The letter came in response to some general cluelessness about fair use from a newspaper that had been quoted by a blogger. Instead of mailing the editor and saying "your legal folks are being heavy handed, I'm sure you understand fair use, why don't you cut the guy a break" we're getting a not-even-veiled threat.
This isn't what blogging's about, it isn't using the medium to its best, and since Kevin runs one of the more popular blogging awards, I'm sure he knows how great blogs can be. I'd urge Kevin and his community to show them bloggers can be more thoughtful than print journalists, not less.
(Offered as proof that I might be right on this one, crazy extremist Michelle Malkin linked to the letter. Regardless of your political beliefs, if someone as antagonistic and shrill as Malkin agrees with you, you may be off track.)
Kevin, as context, you should understand that I'm using this as an example to demonstrate that we should be trying to have a more thoughtful blogosphere, instead of descending into the simplistic us-vs-them which we all resent so much in traditional media. I'd be glad to help if you want to send a revised letter to Mr. Bair.
Every once in a while, some media outlet or another gets a burr under their saddle and tries to start controlling who links to their website. This time, it's the Tulsa World, which sent a cease-and-desist letter to blogger Michael Bates (and one other ... Read More