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A trade journal of a still-emerging field, written by Adam Tinworth.

Posts from the Blogging Category

“Bangs” (Muireann Carey-Campbell) asks Oh, Blogging, where art thou?:

I always thought of blogging as a way to give voice to the little guy (or gal, or non-gender conforming individual). We had a chance to create our own media, to be the antithesis of everything that frustrated us about the mainstream. Now every other thing I see in my timeline is an influencer spouting how much they love whatever their brand of choice is that day, with professionally taken photographs, Photoshopped within an inch of their lives.

With all the tools and opportunity to create a media of our own, we’ve become walking advertisements for brands. Ethics and values – all up for the highest bidder.

Yet, even that can go wrong

It’s my blog anniversary (blogiversary?) and today, this blog is…

14.

Yes, fourteen years old. Terrifying. 14 years since I published this drivel. I’m one of the longest-running bloggers I know of now, just through sheer bloody perseverance. Once you get past the decade, it’s hard to see exactly what would stop me, short of serious illness or death. I’ve now been blogging here longer than I’ve lived in a single house. The blog is older than my marriage – if only by a few months. It’s certainly a lot older than the work I do now – but it might be responsible for it.

I’m not quite sure why I feel the need to make this a part of my week pretty much every – but I do.

So, here’s to 14 years of bloody-mindedly writing for internet. I’ll probably carry on doing it for years to come. Don’t moan. Nobody’s forcing you to read…

14 image by Deb Etheredge, and used under a Creative Commons licence

It’s awards time. No, not those ones. These ones:

Yup, Blogosphere magazine is launching some blogger awards:

There are ten categories in the awards, including the eight different sections we have within the magazine, a community award and… drumroll please… the Blogosphere blogger of the year award. The winners of each category will be featured in issue 14 of the magazine, with the Blogosphere blogger of the year winner taking the FRONT COVER. Yes, you heard us right, if you win blogger of the year, you’ll be our September issue cover star.

Nominations kick off on March 1, so if you’re in the fashion/beauty/lifestyle/food/cooking blogging axis, prepare to start motivating your audience…

Me? I’ll sit it out until business bloggers get added. 😉

Ah, Media Twitter is all aflutter with this news from the New York Times:

The Gateway Pundit, a provocative conservative blog, gained notice last year for its fervent pro-Trump coverage and its penchant for promoting false rumors about voter fraud and Hillary Clinton’s health that rocketed around right-wing websites.

Now the site will report on politics from a prominent perch: the White House.

And they certainly seem pleased about it:

Heavens-to-Betsy, a blogger in the press room? There will be a predictable backlash from journalists (in fact there probably already is one), who will do some eye-rolling at the infiltration of the true journalists’ space. And they will all have forgotten this:

Bloggers and pundits have been granted access to White House briefings in previous administrations

The use of the word “blog” here is pretty arbitrary. The definition of “blog” and “website” are pretty hazy at the best of times and the past five years have only blurred that. (Remember when people were calling Buzzfeed and Huffington Post blogs?)

Gateway Pudit itself has a little fun with that distinction:

The New York Times, a provocative liberal blog

The concern here isn’t that the White House has granted press credentials to a Pro-Trump Blog, but that it has granted them to a Pro-Trump blog. But even that shouldn’t necessarily be of deep concern, because we have so much partisan press already (especially in the UK).

The pundit/propagandist boundary

When should we worry? Well, look at the outlet’s record for truth – if it’s so pro-Trump that it lies for the president, than it’s crossed that hazy line from partisan journalism to straight-up propaganda. And on that charge, they have some form:

The Gateway Pundit did not see protesters getting on or off the bus, and they offered no proof that any protesters had been paid (by George Soros or anyone else). The web site published three pictures of buses and then fabricated a story about paid protesters based on the mistaken observations of a sole Twitter user.

The Washington Post, a blog owned by tech mogul Jeff Bezos, has many more examples for you:

Just last week, the Gateway Pundit published the absurd, social media-generated claim that the Washington Post’s Doris Truong had sneakily snapped cellphone photos of notes belonging to secretary of state nominee Rex Tillerson, during his confirmation hearing. Truong was not at the hearing; it made no sense to think she would have been at the hearing, since she is an editor of The Post’s website.

In some parts of the world, blogging is still very much a revolutionary activity:

Pakistani blogger Aasim Saeed who went missing earlier this month has been found but has quickly left the country fearing for his life, his family said on Sunday. Saeed’s father said his son was detained by “state agencies” while visiting Pakistan from Singapore, though he did not name which one. Pakistan’s government and Federal Investigation Agency have denied holding any of five liberal activists who went missing this month.

He, at least, is alive and visible. There are questions about others:

Five liberal activists, some of whom have posted blogs criticising the political influence of the military and speaking for the rights of religious minorities, had each gone missing separately since Jan. 4.

Medium publications on iOS

Medium is making Publications, its approach to creating “websites” within the platform, much more prominent in its apps:

Only publications that you follow on Medium will be featured on your app’s home screen (and only when they have new posts to read), so make sure to follow publications you enjoy. You can find suggested publications to follow here, or hit the Explore button (next to Publications) on your app’s home screen to browse curated categories.

It seems that Medium has finally chosen to be a platform over a publisher – and this is a nice step to making it more compelling.

Dave Winer:

You can look at journalism as a process that yields a result. It begins with an interest or a question. Are young blacks voting for Hillary? Begin with interviews, find young blacks, ask them. Talk to a few pollsters and sociologists, get expert opinions All the time you’re doing searches to find these people, you may not even have to speak with them, just read what they’ve said on Twitter or their blogs. Then you write it all up, edit it, add some pictures, maybe a video, give it a title, hit Publish. That’s a process and the result it yields. That’s journalism, imho.

Y’know, that’s not bad.

Dave Winer reiterates his distinction between blogging and journalism, in the wake of Gawker’s end:

Blogs are what sources write, not what reporters write. An irreverent scandal sheet written by professional reporters is not a blog.

The piece that triggered his comments proclaims that blogging is dead. Even within its own words, though, it contradicts that idea with a more complex one – that blogging is now just one of a ever-growing number of ways of expressing yourself online. Blogging has more competition – and is edging towards middle age. Nothing wrong with that.

If anything, the end of Gawker is just your cool, rebellious friend who got ever more frantic through his early 20s, dropping out of sight because eventually the lifestyle took too much toll on him. Blogging is entering the early stages of middle age, and becoming both compfortable and useful. As MG Siegler wrote earlier, when asks
ed why he still writes a blog:

My first answer is the best one: writing helps me clarify my own thoughts on any given topic.

That will never stop being useful.