Blogging’s veneer wearing thin

The idea that blogging promotes democracy has always struck me as bogus and Ted Rall’s rant – subtitled Bloggers and the New McCarthyism – is spot on. He rightly points out that political bloggers rarely have their own sources, but link to articles in traditional media, which they then rant and rave about. While Fox News had to go to go court to prove that lying is a US constitutional right, bloggers never have to worry about ‘truth’ (whatever that may be). In the UK the National Union of Journalists is worried enough by falling traditional media standards to support a Labour MP’s right to reply bill and I wonder if bloggers will ever be so mature. (Indeed, this typical blogger response to Rall would never make it in any other medium.)

And as if the internet wasn’t a paranoid enough place, UK bloggers determined to bring the Prime Minister to account for lying (a worthy enough cause), do so by spreading bogus conspiracy theories of great plots against them and then follow through with hysterical bullying of those who point to their lies. Oh dear. Should a blogger ever come across a real story, who’d trust them?
Blogging: a fad that’s peaked

3 thoughts on “Blogging’s veneer wearing thin

  1. Hysterical bullying? Davies spewed a whole load of bile and bull put forward as a non-partisan argument when his interest were clearly partisan and I called him on it.

    As for trust, I agree to a point. I would be unlikely to trust a blog run by an affiliate whore who seems to use half of his posts to attract search engine traffic for commercial search phrases.
    Reply: Fancy that, take a little advertising and be labelled an ‘affiliate whore’ by a ‘viral marketer’ and ‘search engine optimiser’. How many times have we received this spam: ‘I’ve been criticised by a few SEO operators for publishing this article. Some think that it gives away too much’. Yawn! But there’s no shame in making money on the web, Tim. (And whatever spin you put on it, Davies caught you lying and that’s that.)

  2. The commercial aspects of Bloggerheads are clearly defined. Adsense was used on an experimental basis for about a month. Affiliate links are rare and clearly labelled.

    Your blog, on the other hand, often disguises plugs as content. Here’s just one example:
    http://www.stephennewton.com/royal-doulton-plates-china-figurines.html

    I would therefore be unlikely to trust the content overall.

    And – to paraphrase you; I know you?d really, really like it if we had been caught lying (and the mysterious ‘Jim Doyle’ seems strangely determined to shape the incident you refer to in these terms), but that’s a serious accusation.

    So is your suggestion that I’ve spammed people.
    Reply: A post that ends ‘I’m jumping on the bandwagon: buy your wall plates and collectable trinkets here’ could hardly be described as a disguised plug. And it’s optimised for search engines, so what? How much would you charge to optimise some of my other posts?

Leave a Reply