16 March 2007

Will Blogging Just Increase the Popularity of Mainstream Journalists?

In a stunning reversal from his rant just days earlier about the mainstream media's mad dash for irrelevancy, our intrepid blogger has this thought ....

Bloggers are to mainstream columnists what streetball is to the NBA. As much as I enjoy the work of fellow bloggers, I've yet to find someone who nails an issue with the succinct authority of a Paul Krugman or the comedic wit of a Jon Stewart or the research acumen of a Dana Priest or Sy Hersh.

Guys who like to play a game of pickup basketball follow the NBA more closely than those who don't. Recreational golfers are more likely to watch PGA on TV than us normal people. Engagement in a game is more likely to make one a student and fan of that game.

Little League and College Teams create far more fans of professional athletes than actual professional athletes. Might it be that blogging will not create competition for mainstream journalists but will, instead, create a new, bigger audience even more appreciative of their skills?

And wouldn't that be ironic? As the peasants are transformed into the middle class, the rich just get richer. I think we've seen this play before.

6 comments:

Chrlane said...

I don't think there are any true peasants left in the U.S., really.

Ron Davison said...

Chrlane,

Welcome to R World and thanks for your comments.

I guess that I was expressing my feelings as a peasant journalist / blogger.

But still - I could swear that I saw a group of peasants off to the side of the freeway just last Tuesday ....

ThomasLB said...

The world will always have its heroes, but I doubt if the corporate media is really going to provide them.

Today's media personalities have an increasing fragmented audience. People listen to Rush Limbaugh because he says exactly what they think, people listen to Al Franken because he says exactly what they think, and so on.

One of the things that made Malcolm X so unique was that he came back from Mecca and said basically, "I have learned some new things, and I've changed my mind." I don't think the Limbaughs and Frankens of the world would dare do such a thing.

But, back to the your point, I think we'll have lots of big fish in small ponds.

Dave said...

I think bloggers are more like softball league players. We've read and written most of our lives. In school and then to make a living.

We've read the "home run" by a Hersh in an article or in a novel by say, Thomas Russo. Can we write a home run? No, as you say, the Hershes and Russos nail it. But we enjoy the swing and take pride in a clean double.

Why softball and not Single A baseball? The latter is full of young'ns trying to make the Bigs. In the world of writing, they're working for Fox or CNN, behind the cameras waiting for the break through. Though we read and write we aren't trying to make it reading and writing. But we do like the occasional bow to the applause of the crowd, our fellow bloggers, that read us. Same thing as a clean double on Sunday afternoon at the park in front of friends.

Given the medium, the only thing we are missing is the beer at the neighborhood bar.

Ron Davison said...

Thomas,
That is a fascinating notion - a celebrity journalist who actually goes through a profound change of worldview. I wonder how he / she would be received? The new group would be distrustful and the old group betrayed. Hmm. No wonder people stay away from transformation.

Ron Davison said...

Dave,

Softball league is probably much more like it. I should have sent the posting by you before I posted it. But that notion of loving the game even though we can't play at the level of a Pujols and don't make a dime from it is exactly the parallel I was looking for. Wow. That means I'm finally like so many of my friends - finally in a sports league (kind of).