November 30th, 2007
The Rising Importance of Blogging
In the modern world of two thousand and seven, everyone is in the know. People who can barely afford a meal every day have televisions, cell phones, even computers. With new inventions like the iPhone, people can listen to music, talk on the phone and check their email all with the same device. This new age of technology, which allows even the most average of Joe’s to have access to information, is greatly affecting the news media. Because the Internet is so widely accessible, people can learn about the news any time of day. Now that blogs exist, anyone can become a journalist and publish what they believe is newsworthy. Blogging is becoming increasingly important, and is something that should be further examined and analyzed.
The first order of business is to define a blog. What is a blog? A blog “is usually defined as a Web site where information is updated frequently and presented in reverse chronological order (newest stuff on top).” (The New Age of Alternative Media) Another aspect of blogging that must be defined is the blogworld or blogosphere, where all blogs exist. Though the blogosphere is “too large and too varied to be defined as a single thing,” it can be considered to be the entire network of blogs and blogposts.
In the recent past, newspapers were the typical bearers of the goings-on of the world. In this modern world, newspapers have become a thing of the past and given rise to the Internet – the fastest way to get news. The Internet of course leads to blogging. Blogging is certainly having an impact on the world of news, as famous and highly read newspapers like The Washington Post are making new arrangements to welcome this new type of communication. Many companies are “implementing a plan that calls for a merge [of newspaper and online operations] into single unites – no side-by-side operations anymore.” (PublicEye) Blogging is clearly becoming a significant factor in news.
The concept of blogging is becoming a hotly debated topic because many people juxtapose it with typical journalism. Blogging can be considered a type of journalism, though it certainly does not follow the same rules. In fact, when writing a blog one must “get rid of the idea that [one] must have everything nailed down, organized, and edited before [publishing].” (Poynteronline) This is exactly what journalists must do before they publish an article. News articles are carefully planned and edited before going out to the public.
Blogging, or more specifically live-blogging, completely ignores these standard rules. Live-bloggers are doing exactly what their name suggests – writing a blog in real time so that their readers can view the post immediately. This completely bypasses the entire planning and editing phases and is more raw and undisciplined.
This new and creative form of journalism has been both lauded and criticized. Many people consider blogs to be diary entries that are open to the public. Others consider it to be what journalism has evolved into. One of the criticisms of blogging has been that “bloggers have all the liberties of a traditional journalist but few of the obligations.” (Blogs: All the noise that fits) This refers to the fact that bloggers are able to publish whatever they so wish without having to worry about what all journalists are careful to avoid: libel. Many people feel that this new type of journalism is not broadening the “national conversation.” (Blogs: All the noise that fits) In other words, blogging is simply more noise that the public must wade through in order to get to the real news.
Some people hate blogging, others welcome it with open arms. No matter the person’s feelings toward this new trend, the fact remains that blogging is here to stay and is working as a highly influential force in the world of news media. Blog aficionados have said, “In a media world that’s otherwise leached of opinions and life, there’s so much life in them.” (The New Age of Alternative Media) Another important part of blogs is that “they are speaking truth to power.” (PublicEye) In other words, blogs are part of what define dissident media and are a rising force in the world of news media.
Blogs: All the noise that fits. Los Angeles Times, 19 August 2007
Poynteronline. 5 September 2007.
PublicEye. 5 January 2007.
The New Age of Alternative Media. “Blogworld and its gravity.”