BLOGS VS MEDIA, PART XVII
Dean Esmay gives several examples of
his own posts on his blog that he considers real journalismTM, prompting an interesting discussion in his comments section wherein it transpires that everyone pretty much agrees.
Dean adds a postscript,
By the way, how could anyone call what L.T. Smash does anything but journalism?
To which I respond, I think what L.T. Smash does is journalism in the literal sense of keeping a journal. Otherwise, it’s just one guy giving his bird’s eye view of the things he personally sees. It’s a diary, just like the blogs consisting mainly of people’s reactions to the television shows they watched last night or gossip with their friends, except that he’s in a more interesting locale. Indeed, “Smash” doesn’t claim to be more than this:
L.T. Smash is a reserve officer in the United States Military who has been recalled to active duty and deployed overseas in support of Operation IRAQI FREEDOM. This website is an online journal of his adventures. It is meant primarily for the use of his family and friends, but all are welcome to visit.
He writes well and he provides interesting insights as to what’s happening over there. But it’s not the same thing as professional war coverage.
Update (1351): Reader OFJ points to an interesting discussion by Evan Coyne Maloney noting that bloggers are excellent fact checkers and editors, using the analogy of open source software. I don’t dispute any of this; I just note that editing isn’t the same as reporting. (And I’m an editor in my non-blogging capacity!)