[IP] more on Bush Lets U.S. Spy on Callers Without Courts

Adam Fields ip20398470293845 at aquick.org
Thu Dec 22 09:55:30 PST 2005

On Sat, Dec 17, 2005 at 07:37:37PM -0500, David Farber wrote:
>Begin forwarded message:
>From: Chris Beck <cbeck at pacanukeha.net>
>I don't read papers in their printed form, but my experience with
>blogs and other new media news sources is that they cover what is
>apparently happening very well, but hidden stuff still seems to be
>revealed mostly by professional journalists who have the time and
>budget to travel, meet sources, &c.  Notice that even in the one
>year gap in which the Times knew about this, it didn't explode on
>anyone's website.
>Who new - the papers still serve a purpose :)

It's not so much that the papers serve a purpose as it is that they
hire (and support with the resources of their organization)
journalists. Largely, bloggers are not investigative
journalists. Bloggers have a very good distribution network, and are
excellent at getting out stories where the focus is either something
public or something where a blogger has some sort of inside access
stemming from their own personal situation. But bloggers don't often
have large organizations behind them to defend their sources, which
I'd expect would be a concern when you're blowing the whistle on a
large secret government operation.

This difference is key - it takes money and free time to do the
footwork required to follow a story, verify it, research it, and
defend it if need be, and most bloggers aren't professional bloggers,
let alone professional journalists. It's a very small number of
bloggers who have the resources, training, inclination, or
connections/reputation to develop breaking news stories.

In this discourse, we should definitely be drawing a distinction
between news distribution and news origination. It's entirely possible
that this will change in the next few years, but still - the stories
have to come from somewhere.

				- Adam

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