As the rewards of a well executed online operation become common knowledge, there is less need for the Internet's A-list individuals to deliver the word of the Web and personify the participatory journalism movement. Since CNN threw a big blogger party on election night I've been thinking about how the media world has been sorting out the message from the messengers when it comes to bloggers and online trends generally. Putting a bunch of bloggers in a coffee house and interviewing them while they blog pretty much misses the point of what makes blogging special (even if it is a lot of fun for the bloggers involved). I think most media outlets are beyond that kind of thinking.
Nick Carr brought the subject to mind again when he pointed out that in the latest Technorati State of the Blogosphere report, mainstream media outlets are increasing their share of link traffic. It used to be that more bloggers would link to Instapundit linking to the Washington Post than to the Washington Post itself, so celebrated was the messenger.
I saw the message/messenger theme again last night while reading the internal Gawker Media memo about the firing of Valleywag writer Nick Douglas, "But anytime a writer settles in too closely with the subjects he/she's writing about, there comes the inevitable tradeoffs: favor trading, and an elevated sense of one's own importance to the field at hand."
And this morning Om Malik's remarks on the turnover at AOL and Fox Interactive brought to mind the decreasing value of the Internet messenger: "It seems to me that the old media companies are putting old media guys in charge of their new media empires."
I'm still waiting for this theme to gel in my brain, but I think I'm finally getting a sense of what the mediascape looks like when "Bloggers vs. Journalists" is truly over.
Then there's this: "Tony Blair's outgoing chief strategy adviser fears the internet could be fuelling a "crisis" in the relationship between politicians and voters." This is similar to what G.H.W. Bush said the other day about bloggers and the political environment. I'm still on the fence about whether this means there will be a backlash against bloggers or the next generation will simply learn not to take bloggers so seriously.
Though I admittedly don't pay very close attention, I didn't realize Lindsay Lohan is such a wise ass. My impression of her is decidedly improved as a result.
Speaking of magazine interview excerpts, Sacha Baron Cohen is interviewed as himself in the new Rolling Stone. Have I not been paying attention or does it seem like this magazine is more relevant lately than it's been in years?
As long as we're reading magazines, Megnut rounds up Turkey cooking tips from magazines.
"Humans possess a tiny, shiny crystal of magnetite in the ethmoid bone, located between your eyes, just behind the nose." The theory is that we have a built-in compass. Sense of direction is not the same as sense of north, so I'm not sure I buy the whole thing.
Zune ad spoofs - Ironically, this is probably the best PR news I've seen for Zune this week.
Is life necessary to the definition of animal? If, for example, it's illegal to have sex with an animal, is it also illegal to have sex with a dead animal? This guy hopes not. This defense is officially more humiliating than the Borat frat guy's "I was too drunk to contain my own racism" defense.
Flying Alarm Clock - How Harry Potter is this? The alarm goes off, the propeller spins and you have to wake up and get of bed to chase the thing down and shut it off.
Speaking of flying robots, "Israel is using nanotechnology to try to create a robot no bigger than a hornet that would be able to chase, photograph and kill its targets, an Israeli newspaper reported on Friday."
Effects of troop numbers in Iraq - Even if you're only mildly interested, try to read past the first chart to see how the statistics are being explored, it's pretty interesting.
SiteMaps Explained - This is my favorite kind of link. I saw all the hype about the major portals agreeing on a site map standard. I sort of gathered that it has implications for search engines but really, I didn't understand what made it such big news. Thanks Global Nerdy for the explanation.
"Microsoft could save 45 million tons of CO2 emissions with a few lines of computer code." Their suggestion is to install "deep hibernation" on all MS machines so that when they sit idle overnight they use less energy.
Jedi Knights demand Britain's fourth largest 'religion' receives recognition Also, UN rejects Jedi Knights' plea for recognition -this one has a video link to the UN press conference. The whole thing is funny except when you watch the press conference and see it paired with news updates about Darfur.
"If the experiment works, a signal could be received before it's sent" This is an interesting article, but if time travel exists, why try so hard to figure it out? Just wait for yourself to come back in time and let you know how it works.
Do small cost economies like iTunes target the compulsive over-spender? I feel like somewhere there's someone at Apple saying, "It worked!"
The head butt heard 'round the world becomes part of French culture.