January 3, 2005

"The blogosphere's tendency toward crackpot theorizing and political smack down."

The NYT is observing the blogosphere again and somehow I feel all inspired to smack them down.
The interplay between the sites, left and right, is typical of the rumbles in cyberspace between rivals at different ends of the political spectrum. In many ways, Web logs shone after the tsunami struck: bloggers in the regions posted compelling descriptions of the devastation, sometimes by text messages sent from their cellphones as they roamed the countryside looking for friends and family members. And blogs were quick to create links to charities so that people could help online.

But the blogosphere's tendency toward crackpot theorizing and political smack down could not be suppressed for long.

So those little, special things you bloggers are in a position to do are just fine, but when it comes to analyzing anything, you just revert to your usual crazy tendencies. Now, why isn't that a crackpot theory? Will the NYT ever notice how much sane and sound analysis goes on in blog form?
Online discussion can evolve toward truth, said Clay Shirky, an adjunct professor in the interactive telecommunications program at New York University and a blogger. One result is a process that can be more reliable than many new media, where corrections are often late and small, if they appear at all.

(New media? Isn't that a description of of old media?)

So the Times approves of the portrayal of blogging as some sort of low level phenomenon -- it can "evolve toward truth" -- but it won't recognize that there are plenty of bloggers who can seize on some fresh item and analyze it on the spot quite well and quite apart from crazy theories and pat ideology. The Times gleefully begins its piece with an idiotic Democratic Underground theory (Bush caused the earthquake), which the reader is left to think typifies the nutty blogosphere. Well, that's their theory and they're sticking with it.

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