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Bloggers the Tech World's New Elite? 224

Posted by ScuttleMonkey
from the narcism-at-its-best dept.
Carl Bialik writes "Wall Street Journal tech columnist Lee Gomes says that the top tech blogs 'aren't part of some proletarian information revolution, but instead have become the tech world's new elite. Reporters for the big mainstream newspapers and magazines, long accustomed to fawning treatment at corporate events, now show up and find that the best seats often go to the A-list bloggers. And living at the front of the velvet rope line means the big bloggers are frequently pitched and wooed. In fact, with the influence peddling universe in this state of flux, it's not uncommon for mainstream reporters, including the occasional technology columnist, to lobby bloggers to include links to their print articles.'"
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Bloggers the Tech World's New Elite?

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  • If all the the WSJ has to write about it a virtual-print article about a virtual-print logging service
  • ...totally boring, usually incorrect, massively ignored, whiners...then yes.
    • ...totally boring, usually incorrect, massively ignored, whiners...then yes.

      Wow, a completely ignorant comment from someone that didn't RTFA and hasn't been keeping up w/the rapid changes taking place in the "industry".

      Actually, recently, those that author some of the largest blogs are starting to do it as their full time job (we've seen articles on Slashdot about that), this article mentions that people are going directly to the authors' homes to try and pitch their idea/technology to get a write up on the
      • I did read the article and I stand by what I said. Most blogs are complete wastes of time. As a Director if IS&T it's my job to keep up with the industry and I don't see people giving cudos to idiots who blog well as important to my function.

        It's not ignorant, it's just a different opinion than your stupid statements. :)
    • by SatanicPuppy (611928) <Satanicpuppy&gmail,com> on Wednesday December 07, 2005 @05:44PM (#14205459) Journal
      They're just being fadded to death by people who don't understand the technology OMG BLOGOSPHERE OMGOMG!

      What it comes down to is reliable respected information sources. Some blogs are excellent, but most are crap...this is to be expected with the low barrier to entry.

      Print tech reporters have had it too easy for too long...you had to be print first, which means that the tech reporter for the WSJ or the NYT has to have been in the business for quite a while, and is probably not exactly tech savvy, and certainly not hip. Now those fossils are competing with bloggers, and some of those bloggers are hip, articulate, AND extremely tech savvy, so, of course, they're getting beat down.

      What's their conclusion? Is it, we need to hire people like that to do our tech column? No. It's OMG OMG BLOGS RULE BLOGOSPHERE OMG! Blah blah blah. Eventually they'll stop missing the point.
      • Print tech reporters have had it too easy for too long...you had to be print first, which means that the tech reporter for the WSJ or the NYT has to have been in the business for quite a while, and is probably not exactly tech savvy, and certainly not hip. Now those fossils are competing with bloggers, and some of those bloggers are hip, articulate, AND extremely tech savvy, so, of course, they're getting beat down.

        It's time folks started reading blogs or some other tool for their 'advice.' I swear, Dear A

    • by Billosaur (927319) * <wgrother@NosPAm.optonline.net> on Wednesday December 07, 2005 @05:46PM (#14205470) Journal
      ...totally boring, usually incorrect, massively ignored, whiners...then yes.

      I'm not sure I'd go that far, as some of the bloggers in Techland do seem to have a grasp of the fundamentals. Whether I would call them members of the "elite" is debateable. If news organizations are losing out to bloggers, what does that say about the newspeople? And if these bloggers are the "elite", doesn't that mean they'll eventually fall prey to courting by big interests (Microsoft, Oracle, etc.)?

      Everyone has an opinion. Anyone can start a blog. Chaos ensues.

      • If news organizations are losing out to bloggers, what does that say about the newspeople?

        It doesn't say anything about newspeople. What it does say is that consumers of blogs tend to believe anything that's written, while ignoring the source. Bloggers will never replace journalists for those of us who are interested in real news... not just rehashed "news", conspiracy theories, and opinion, more often than not, written by people with no idea how to write, how to write without bias, how to present facts,
    • by Shadow Wrought (586631) <shadow.wrought@gmai l . com> on Wednesday December 07, 2005 @05:59PM (#14205600) Homepage Journal
      When "Elite" and "Blogger" are used in the same sentence, you know we are in more trouble than any of us want to believe.
  • by Valiss (463641) on Wednesday December 07, 2005 @05:31PM (#14205328) Homepage
    No. Next?
    • Get out of my head!

      Bloggers the Tech World's New Elite? Huh? They are just a bunch of geeks capitalizing on the ignorant mass media who have popularized blogging as of late. Blogging will become a niche again in a couple of years when the media and the public lose interest.

    • How the HELL is "No. Next?" insightful in ANY way?

      It makes no references to the article or the issue at hand whatsoever, and requires no thought at all. Thus, this comment I am making must ALSO be "Insightful" (although I would disagree :P)
    • Agreed.

      This journalist is in awe of other supposed journalists' (blogger's) new toy, then procedes to overstate the issue.

      In other news, according to Cookie Monster, the cookie has been declared "best food ever." When pressed on which particular cookie was superior he declined any further comment.
  • Finally (Score:3, Insightful)

    by NotoriousGOD (936922) on Wednesday December 07, 2005 @05:31PM (#14205330)
    The "world" (I use that word loosely) is realizing that it's not only the automatically appointed elitists who's opinion or viewpoint is important. It's coming down to the intelligent individual, who can give a less biased (or sometimes not) and always informative opinion and update on important subject matter to everyday persons. I'd much rather read blogs than find out who Jennifer Aniston is dating now in the latest People.
  • by Anonymous Coward
    I read a lot of blogs, but I'm ashamed to admit it in public. The perception is that all blogs are just like LiveJournal/MySpace self-absorbed bitchfests.

    "Blogosphere" sounds even worse. I will never utter that word as long as I live.
    • The perception is that all blogs are just like LiveJournal/MySpace self-absorbed bitchfests.

      Actually I'd say the opposite. People seem to think "blogs" are always those hosted on a standalone website, written by people hoping they'll get a massive audience, and expecting people who don't know them to read it. Hence you get a whole load of "Why should I read crap from someone I don't know" comments everytime Slashdot mentions the word "blog". Most blogs are simply people who use them for things like journall
  • No. Next question. (Score:5, Interesting)

    by solios (53048) on Wednesday December 07, 2005 @05:31PM (#14205334) Homepage
    Add commenting capability to a website, update it regularly and SUDDENLY, OH NOEZ ITS A BLAWG!!!!!.

    Bloggers are hot shit the same way desktop linux is hot shit. Everybody doing it thinks it's the coolest damned thing since the toaster. Nobody else gives a shit.

    (disclaimer : I blog [deadcityradio.org].)
    • by Otter (3800) on Wednesday December 07, 2005 @05:50PM (#14205515) Journal
      Bloggers are hot shit the same way desktop linux is hot shit. Everybody doing it thinks it's the coolest damned thing since the toaster. Nobody else gives a shit.

      Sure, but wait until I have Linux running on my toaster! Maybe I should blog about it...

      • by Mr2cents (323101) on Wednesday December 07, 2005 @07:45PM (#14206269)
        Sure, but wait until I have Linux running on my toaster!

        I hope you do better then I did, I used a cd-writer and an industrial laser, but it didn't work out well:
        #ssh roaster
        Password:
        Welcome to roaster. Running Linux 2.6.13
        #eject
        #
        * Runs to toaster, inserts bread slices, runs back to desktop *
        #eject -t
        #cdrecord -dev 0,0,0 breadimage.img
        ...
        #
        Ok, I can burn custom tux images on my bread, but next time I wouldn't use a single speed writer anymore.
      • ITYM BSD [flickr.com].
    • by _Sprocket_ (42527)

      Everybody doing it thinks it's the coolest damned thing since the toaster. Nobody else gives a shit.

      And yet... these people that nobody else "gives a shit" about are apparently getting front-row treatment. Interesting way to be ignored.

      Not that your pithy comment doesn't have some merrit - there's a lot of hubris around blogs that need some reality checks. But let's at least try to do it reasonably. Obviously SOMEONE other than "bloggers" care. But one point is that posting up a blog doesn't buy you i

      • And yet... these people that nobody else "gives a shit" about are apparently getting front-row treatment. Interesting way to be ignored.

        Obviously someone cares... look at Rathergate and the Dan Rather fiasco. Or Matt Drudge. Or James Lileks.

        Or.... to get back into the tech field, the way outlets like Slashdot and Ars Technica influence the market (that is, us). People read them, they think about what is written there. You may not agree, but they've bought the most valuable commodity in advertising: a little
    • Yeah, you're right, no one gives a shit about comments posted on a web site. Except yours, of course.

      Uhh, OK.
  • Thats ok with me. Much harder to bribe 1000 different bloggers, than to bribe a single news organization. It will return to status Quo if the bloggers organize into some tightly nit network.
    • Re:Fine by me (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Locke2005 (849178) on Wednesday December 07, 2005 @06:01PM (#14205617)
      Much harder to bribe 1000 different bloggers, than to bribe a single news organization. Bullshit. Bloggers have far less to lose, not having spent the last 100 years building a reputation. Most can probably bought for a few trinkets. Microsoft is already paying bloggers for favorable press. Basically, bloggers can be bought for pennies compared to the price of traditional media. With traditional media, you've got to buy millions in advertising space to get them to lie about how good your product is...
    • Re:Fine by me (Score:4, Insightful)

      by generic-man (33649) * on Wednesday December 07, 2005 @06:04PM (#14205640) Homepage Journal
      Really? I'd think it's much cheaper to buy off 1,000 small-time bloggers than to buy off a news organization. The freebies that companies send out impress Some Blog Dude way more than a jaded tech journalist for a mainstream newspaper.

      Plus, if your blog is exposed as a shill for tech companies, just shut it down and open two others! You can live off the corporate freebies and AdSense revenue forever, and you can even purport to count yourself among the "world's new elite."
  • by saskboy (600063) on Wednesday December 07, 2005 @05:31PM (#14205340) Homepage Journal
    The reason bloggers are courted is because they can put a personal touch with communication with their followers. Thus if they plug a product, then advertisers will get more bang for their buck, even with smaller reading audiences.

    My mostly unread blog [only about a dozen regular readers who aren't family or close friends] still has people finding it, and using the information on it. Unlike a newspaper, they aren't as shy about asking me a question about my content, and I'm more likely to give a personalized response to a request for additional info.
  • Ummm... No. (Score:4, Interesting)

    by sczimme (603413) on Wednesday December 07, 2005 @05:33PM (#14205361)

    aren't part of some proletarian information revolution, but instead have become the tech world's new elite.

    No - no, they are not. Mayhap the person(s) forming this opinion should venture into the "tech world" one of these days.

    bloggers:tech_world_elite::script_kiddies:security _world_elite

    • bloggers:tech_world_elite :: script_kiddies:security _world_elite

      Perfect.

      And just like the script kiddies, everyone tells them how cool they are while laughing once they walk away.
    • bloggers:tech_world_elite::script_kiddies:security _world_elite

      Really? So having a blog automatically makes you ignorant? Because it seems to me that a member of this imaginary Tech World Elite could take up blogging without suddenly becoming ignorant. Perhaps you can explain this amazing logical leap of yours to me. Oh, and better explain it to Mark Russinovich [sysinternals.com], too.

      Dumbass.

  • The Difference... (Score:4, Insightful)

    by taskforce (866056) on Wednesday December 07, 2005 @05:33PM (#14205364) Homepage
    The difference is anyone can open a Blog, with little or no skill and a web connection. While you can get a column in the WSJ with little or no skill, you need a whole lot more than a net connection.
  • Maybe the bloggers being wooed aren't elite. Maybe they can just be bought off more easily.
    • Whats more credible/acceptable/believable?

      An overly large corporation with the media power to bring a government to its knees?

      Or...

      Anonymous Coward blogging whatever the hell he wants with the ability to 'disappear' from the government?

  • by AthenianGadfly (798721) on Wednesday December 07, 2005 @05:34PM (#14205381)
    It seems to me that a lot of these things are simply a factor of how much someone's material is getting read. Traditionally, the mainstream media is given special treatment because they have a wide audience. If there are bloggers with a wide audience, then it only makes sense that they would get the same treatment, and it's no secret that the audience for blogs is large and probably growing. It doesn't seem to me that it's a question of ideology or even what format writes in. As the summary says, it's an "influence peddling universe", and people are going to go after whoever controls that influence, whether blogger or reporter.
  • by otisg (92803) on Wednesday December 07, 2005 @05:34PM (#14205382) Homepage Journal
    Bloggers are not necessarily the world's tech elite, but they are certainly the loudest, the most outspoken and, yes, most of them are the early adopters.

    The same (early adopters bit in particular) can be said about social bookmarking users. For instance, less than 1/3 of all Simpy [simpy.com] users use IE, and over 40% of them use Firefox. If we assume that early tech adopters are also Firefox and not IE users, then yes, bloggers and social bookmarker are early adopters. But does that make them the elite? Does Linus Torvalds have a blog? Not. Yet.
    • Sure Linus blogs. Only wimps use a central site to blog. Real bloggers attach code to their comments and allow the world to publish it.
    • but they are certainly the loudest, the most outspoken and, yes, most of them are the early adopters

      Isn't that the case with the "elites" in all media? They often tend to be the biggest loudmouths, and/or they usually have something new/unconventional to say or a new way of thinking. Think A-list actors that pose nude for PeTA or shock-jocks like Howard Stern...

      For instance, less than 1/3 of all Simpy users use IE, and over 40% of them use Firefox

      So what do the remaining 30 percent or so use for browsing?
  • Blotter? I don't need no stinking blotter! Upgrade to the 21st century...
  • In fact, with the influence peddling universe in this state of flux, it's not uncommon for mainstream reporters, including the occasional technology columnist, to lobby bloggers to include links to their print articles.'"

    Oh the irony.
  • by Ted Holmes (827243) <simply.ted@gmail.com> on Wednesday December 07, 2005 @05:38PM (#14205407) Homepage
    Blogs are here to stay, because they represent the evolution of the Web page, and by extension, of digital media.

    The biggest reason Blogs have become so very popular, and why they are here to stay in growing numbers is because they made publishing online easy for everyone. Blogs don't require you to know HTML before you can publish your ideas online. Just type your thoughts into a form, and the software builds the code automatically.

    So, Blogs dramatically reduced the "friction" to publishing online. Millions of non-geeks now have their say.

    If you mentally replace the word "Blog" with "Home Page" in any article you read online, it'll seem like you've stepped back in time to the dawn of the Web. That's how people talked about the web a few years ago.

    Blogs have accelerated grass roots democracy, leaching the "Mass" from Media, splintering it into untold numbers of demassified niches. The impact is very big and will deepen.

    I recently finished a piece on the impact of new digital media upon the mass media called: " Mass Media, By And For The Masses [blogspot.com]. It makes the case that the london transit bombings represent the birth of emergent mass media and will force mass media in all forms, to take it's rightful place as another niche.

    In a nutshell, Mass media will be good for mass events. But Blogs represent the birth of grass roots media. Aggregated through RSS, they'll soon out-perform mainstream.

    • by chroot_james (833654) on Wednesday December 07, 2005 @05:46PM (#14205467) Homepage
      Get off your high horse. It's people like you, who write on the Internet and think they're special for it, that are pushing the whole blog thing. Everyone's excited and writing about it, but also linking to their blog at the end of everything they write online now. So what, you wrote some stuff... It's probably just as homogenous as everything else that's written in any other form.
      • What's this "pushing the blog thing" you're talking about?

        I think a major shift in how people make and get news is interesting, and there's very good evidence that it's changing people's lives. Politicians have had to dramatically change their strategies, it's affecting how war works, and it's changing business. People are rethinking what personal boundaries mean, and where they should be.

        So, it seems natural to me that people should talk about blogs.

        So, I'm wondering: What's your concern? Are you just not
  • I've been wrong before, but isn't a link to a print article technically called a Citation?
  • This goes back to an old Marketing method that says the marketer basically finds and persuades people who are a powerful influence on many others. Celebrities and whatever gadget they may carry is a perfect example.

    This practice has basically moved online. Since the publication needs to attract eyeballs, its published as the most double-extra powerful tool ever in the history of the world.

    I just want to get on the list for all that free stuff.
  • That's what bloggers keep telling me.
  • by ObsessiveMathsFreak (773371) <obsessivemathsfreak.eircom@net> on Wednesday December 07, 2005 @05:41PM (#14205436) Homepage Journal
    The dream was nice while it lasted, but I'm afraid the honeymoon of blogging is coming to a close. The Marketers have found it now and blogging will never be the same again.

    From TFA:
    Mr. Rivera estimates that roughly 12,000 people read his blog every day. In the great big real world of mainstream media, 12,000 is a rounding error. But in the new blog order in the tech world, that number is big enough to include the entire universe of decision makers, thought leaders, first movers and all relevant wannabes and hangers on.
    I think the message is clear. Blogs may not offer quantity of suckers^H^H^H viewers, but they do offer quality of viewers. With one link in the right blog, the marketing man can pay to reach the exact people he could only hope of catching by chance in other media. This isn't just a marketing pipe dream. Bribing bloggers is about to become big business.

    One could hope that the blogging community will be steadfast enough to resist the oncoming corruption, but it's hard to be steadfast after some oily marketing representative has just stuffed your face in a nice restaurant and shacked you up with a four star hotel room.

    Be prepared. A lot of blogs, not all, but a lot, are about to pull a great big "Driver 3: 9/10" on various items. I'd guess the form this will take will be hyping new technologies, languages and frameworks, rather than blatantly plugging products. Think the hyping of Java, only for whatever new tech rolls around next time.

    If the marketers are really good, and they are, the bloggers may not even know they've been bought.
    • The only problem I have with this theory, I think, is: Why would all the high influence people continue to read a higher influence person, if it's clear that they're just repeating corporate influence?

      It seems to me like you would need to pay off 12,000 more people, because they have nothing to gain by repeating that piece of spam, just on their own. In fact, they lose credibility with their readers, if they do so.
    • The Marketers have found it now and blogging will never be the same again.

      OK, we'll be needing a new word for "blog spam". The obvious candidates are blam and splog (or spog). I'll vote for blam! (with the exclamation point). I should register this as a trademark...

    • Let it happen. We can always replace them with people who arn't bought off.

      Remember when the entry price is free to all blogs and theres hundreds out there, you will find one which suits your needs better. Smart people won't listen to idiots who have clearly been bought off any more then we listen to magazines or celebrities.
    • Be prepared. A lot of blogs, not all, but a lot, are about to pull a great big "Driver 3: 9/10" on various items.

      The problem with that argument is that blog validity is self regulating - like Daffy Duck quffing a jug of nitroglycerince and a pound of dynamite, they can only pull that trick once.

      Ok perhaps a few times. But the same quality in readers that makes them desireable to target (intelligent and educated) also makes them more likley to catch wind of any graft. If a blogger starts to say things that
  • yeah right. "Tech World's New Elite", what a bunch of CRAP.
  • by RomulusNR (29439) on Wednesday December 07, 2005 @05:46PM (#14205475) Homepage
    Anyone who hasn't noticed this already [ljseek.com] either is already in the elite, or is content being a fanboy:

    The digerati are cheering the blogosphere, hailing it as the falling of the final barrier to the open public medium that the Internet was supposed to be -- in much the same way that the creation of the Wiki is seen as the long-awaited achievement of the knowledge-network that the hypertexted Web was supposed to be.

    But of course the digerati are cheering the blogosphere -- it's their personal domain.

    As the theory goes, the blogosphere makes it so anyone at all can put their interests, views, and discoveries on their blog, some portion of the Internet masses (especially blog-readers) will see it, share it, spread it around. Each person can be their own broadcast tower, theoretically equal in visibility and reach potential to anyone else.

    Except it's not quite like that (bandwidth and space limitations being only part of the antithesis). There is a subtle, unspoken but implicit "popular Darwinism" that occurs in this process. As it is the digerati that does much of the reading and spreading, it is the digerati that ends up doing the saying of what gets read and spread.

    Certainly a few well-placed blogs have launched otherwise typical netizens into the ranks of the digerati -- Rob Malda, Philip Kaplan, Drew Curtis to name a few off the top of my head. And to some extent, they deserve some sort of recognition of being the first to come up with certain online concepts.

    As a result, though, they also each help hold the keys to the gate of the blogosphere. And despite being independent, free-willed individuals, capable of making their own value judgements, a barrier to entry into the slipstream of the blogosphere manages to form among them. Despite being controlled in only limited amounts by individual people, only certain elements make it through this cultural elite.

    Of course, not all of the "blogerati" are on the mountain because of their blogging pluck; some are there because they have always been there, in the digerati circles, which is doubly reflexive: being in the digerati means, by definition, that they will try to be on top of any new "hip" Net development; and by being digerati, they will get an boosted amount of attention when they do so.

    It would be wonderful if the blogosphere was truly an open community. The thought that there really could be an open exchange of information (casual or otherwise) that people could contribute to, and that information be assessed and categorized, and be available to those who were looking for it or had an interest in it, is one that brings forth feelings of true community, egalitarianism, and diversity. Instead, it is a sort of random quasi-natural selection, where some are in, and some are out, and there is no real reason to it.

    You had a better chance to get read in 1997 by posting to Usenet than you do in 2005 posting to Slashdot.
  • by rtphokie (518490) on Wednesday December 07, 2005 @05:47PM (#14205479)
    are other bloggers.
  • ...in order to be an elite blogger. You have to already know something in order to comment effectually. You have to already know something for people to want to read your blog. Just starting a blog isn't enough.

    On the other hand, I do think that blogging is the future of news media. All we need is one site to rule them all, one site to bind them... into something like a traditional news outlet so you don't have to go hunting for them all, since there's lag time on a google index.

  • Misdirected Anger (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Kwirl (877607) <kwirlkarphys@gmail.com> on Wednesday December 07, 2005 @05:50PM (#14205511)

    There seems to be a lot of flack towards the author by the slashdot (holds his breath waiting for the collective gasp of surprise)community. In particular seems to be a lot of revulsion towards his use of the word 'elite'. What some have touched on, but people seem to overlook, is the fact that in a sense these people are very much the 'elite' of the information providing world.

    Nearly the entire world has a collective distaste for the majority of the established media. However, A-list bloggers, as he describes them, provide an alternative and often informed opinion about specific subject matter. Do I care what ABC news says about the war in Iraq? Not at all. But that blog from a squad commander on the front line in Uzbekistan(sic) about the day to day life of the soldiers under his command and his struggles with his superior officers is damn sure getting a bookmark in my favorites. Maybe I don't care what CNN thinks is the next new gadget to buy. But I DO care what an MIT professor blogs about as exciting projects among his graduate class.

    The ultimate difference is that blogging is journalism by the people, for the people. Much like the real media, it is saturated with non-accurate information, but it also has the occasional trade expert who can provide us an internal view on how things actually work, and THAT is elite. Hate the slang, hate the excess, but remember that those kids writing about their D&D games online now will be talking about their business start-up plans in 10 years. There is a lot of room to grow, a lot of room to tangentize, but simply put it is more than a fad. More than a trend. It is a way for people to connect with other people who actually care about something.


    PS - I'm not perfect, my opinions are my own, but I share them with the community. Do with it what you will. I did.

  • The world is ending. This is a sign of the apocolypse. Abandon all hope ye who enter here.
  • I'd like to comment but I am too busy reading tech blogs. Only another 96,546 to go, each one so very very interesting and important.

    Why are some people so obsessed with other people's opinions? Opinions are gone like the wind. Would you prefer to invest in a company run by someone who worked hard and knew his own mind or who spent all day reading blogs, fearful that he didn't?

    Blogs are a great argument for internet-enabled lavatories since they are the modern equivalent of loo books. No one need feel
  • ...that the Tech World's 'Old' Elite were:

    Reporters for the big mainstream newspapers and magazines

    I'm not sure many would agree with that either.

  • So is this guy a columnist for a major newspaper complaining that bloggers are horning in on his territory?

    Or is he a blogger bragging that bloggers are hot shit right now?

  • by SuperBanana (662181) on Wednesday December 07, 2005 @05:51PM (#14205531)
    And living at the front of the velvet rope line means the big bloggers are frequently pitched and wooed.

    Companies place at the front of the line whoever talks about their product or service in the most flattering ways. "Web loggers" are well known for floofy, heavily biased stuff- and they don't have all that training in nasty things like ethics that get in the way of corporate agendas. Further, I'd guess the percentage that report to an editor to be in the realm of less than 1%, and I'd guess that 90% of that 1% are "mainstream" journalists working for "mainstream" media.

    I find it absolutely no surprise they're placed in front of journalists.

    And no, "web loggers" are NOT journalists. Journalists CAN have a "web log"- there's a very important distinction there. "Web loggers" love to complain about "traditional" or "mainstream" media and often compare themselves to "mainstream" media figures nobody takes seriously, in an attempt to legitimatize themselves. The extent to which they willfully discredit a profession is absolutely atrocious. When was the last time you hear someone complain about "mainstream" mechanical engineers, for example? There is a reason we educate people in professional fields and place stock in those educations. They're not infallable, but far as I can tell- they're a lot more reliable and trustworthy than the "web logging" community as a whole. For example, I've found numerous instances of "web log" entries linked to by slashdot which have had circumstantial ties to the subject of the entry- usually some company's product. Another linked posting was by a guy who was closely tied to an "online marketing expert." I think there is quite a bit of astroturf in the "web log" arena- much more so than in "mainstream" media, I'd bet.

    IMHO, journalists are people who go to school and study it, train under the wing of a mentor, and report to an editor. Bloggers are "some Joe with a webpage."

    • They're not infallable, but far as I can tell- they're a lot more reliable and trustworthy than the "web logging" community as a whole.

      The problem is that every single time (that's every time) I've been involved in something that was in a newspaper article, the "professionals" got major facts wrong. I lived about three miles away from Columbine highschool and so have perspective to say the mass-mass media aren't much better.

      When respectible bloggers get things wrong, they fess up and post it publicially sl
  • Maybe, just maybe, with all these bloggers the media will be turned upside down, and we can get rid of some of the lessor ones. Dvorack is one who should have retired more than a decade ago. He was interesting in the 80's (reminded me of news.com's declan), but by mid 90's, he had lost his edge and I would argue he is gone. The nice thing about the bloggers is that they will do for the tech media what mp3 is doing for the RIAA/artists; freeing up the providers of content and rewarding them. In fact, if tech

  • Or maybe its just that bloggers are more likely to return the favour of a free pass/meal/hotel etc with a good review than traditional journos... half of good press is quite probably knowing who to bribe.
  • One thing I've found blogs to be very useful for is to get hands-on reviews of products and services. The tough part is seperating out the wheat from the chaff and learning who's actually interested in writing a review to help other people out and who is being a shill for the manufacturer.

    I've posted some reviews of products and services on my own web site (I too don't care for the word "blog") and I've had some good feedback because I am not being paid by anyone for my opinion.

  • Blogs (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Turn-X Alphonse (789240) on Wednesday December 07, 2005 @06:00PM (#14205607) Journal
    I have a blog. It's mostly full of random thoughts, notes to people and reviews of things I like. It's read by 20 or so of my friends and that's about it. Does that some how make me an elite person or does it just mean I'm using a blog to get thoughts of my head and run them through?

    Anyone who thinks blogs are a resource worth listening to and appealing to beyond any other basic news site clearly doesn't understand blogs. They're not some sort of revolution in ways of reporting news, they're not the newest way to make money. They're simpaly social circles written down, in the past I'd tell friends about new games I was playing, now I just blog about them and they can read it if they wish.

    The way most blog systems are set up is very simple and easy. You click a button after you've done typing and it's done. It's like having a geocities site with no limit on bandwidth and no need to waste time designing a layout. Maybe a few more links and a few less images but this isn't anything special, just another resource for the average person to use.
  • Wall Street Journal tech columnist Lee Gomes says that the top tech blogs 'aren't part of some proletarian information revolution, but instead have become the tech world's new elite.

    I don't know... I tried to cite a handful of reputable and well known bloggers (I won't mention any names) in an essay that I wrote last year for a science class at uni. However, my first draft was handed to me with red lines through each reference to a blogger in my bibliography, along with a comment to include "real sources".

    D
  • Pfft. (Score:3, Informative)

    by millennial (830897) on Wednesday December 07, 2005 @06:07PM (#14205662) Journal
    There's nothing elite about bloggers. They're just minor celebrities, like the guy that invented Cheetos.
  • No.
  • A bunch of people sitting in their comfy climate-controlled homes writing utter shit is not the proletariat. In fact, blogging itself has nothing to do with communism at all. Not every revolution is a proletarian revolution.
  • "...it's not uncommon for mainstream reporters, including the occasional technology columnist, to lobby bloggers to include links to their print articles."

    How does one link to a print article?
  • It's all well and good that those who have widely read online journals are being given treatment traditionally reserved for regular journalists. For the most part, the online journal has few trappings that plague conventional news outlets. Having no established organization above them--organizations with political agendas or obligations to advertisers--the men or women writing these online journals need only answer to themselves, need only to worry about their own personal reputation, and their readers ar
  • Whoa, I didn't know tech bloggers were into undercover drug sting philosophy. Or that Slashdot editors were into people who were into that.

    The word you're scrabbling for is "narcissism". I'm too busy admiring my vocabulary to say more than that.
  • by PhotoBoy (684898) on Wednesday December 07, 2005 @07:31PM (#14206195)
    I was amused to read this study [theinquirer.net] made in Germany which shows that more people keep blogs than read them!
  • Bloggers aren't the tech world's new elite. The tech world's old elite just got blogs. All the significant tech blogs are done by people who have been significant for ages and made their names doing real stuff. The thing that's changed is that the tech elite don't need lowly reporters to tell the public things, but can do so directly.

    This is true in general. This year, I've been following Jeff Master's excellent blog about the hurricane season. But he's not just some guy who talks about hurricanes; he's got
  • Blahgers.
  • I thought it was the engineers that create tech products and the IT guys that keep the systems running (including that one system, you may have heard of it, the Internet)

    Nah, it's really the bloggers that are 'elite'.
  • One day blogging is the new media that encapsulates the freedom of the internet. The next day blogging is nothing but a bunch of loud mouth jerks who have a personal agenda. So which is it?

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