Better to write for yourself and have no public, than to write for the public and have no self. - Cyril Connolly
Tuesday, June 07, 2005
Could blogs become the fifth estate?
This article raises a very relevant idea, and amplifies the premise of my friend Steve, who writes about this very issue in his monthly column at this week.

I'm finding this whole aspect of the Blogosphere (and yes, I capitalized that as a proper noun for a reason), completely fascinating. To think that any person with some computer access, literacy, (and yes, I realize that there are inherent access and social / economic class issues associated with that statement, but they are becoming less and less) and an opinion to share - can readily PUBLISH ideas, thoughts and statements to the Internet for all to read, and share they shall.
Pew Internet & American Life Project have conducted the first in-depth academic study of 40 of the biggest and most respected political blogs and the extent to which they influence and are influenced by other media.

"We tracked not just the political blogs but also what the US mass media was saying and what general internet chatrooms were saying," explains Michael Cornfield, the senior research consultant on the project, named Buzz, Blogs and Beyond.

Its results show that bloggers are generally following another agenda, whether that of a political party or another medium, but also highlights the extent to which they can now influence the mainstream media on certain topics. "Sometimes blogs lead and can be very influential and other times they're followers," he says. While it remains too early to tell how the medium will develop, he says, the report offers an intriguing glimpse of how bloggers are starting to shape the US news agenda.
Read both articles - they are VERY good.

This is SO cool. As I mentioned in an earlier post today, I'm hoping that this blog and others like it in Baltimore, will join me in using our blogs to support and campaign on behalf of local up and coming politicians like Peter Bielenson.

There is an issue before the FEC to regulate blogs when they do things like this. If they decide to charge me for supporting a candidate? Fine. I'll simply revert to private email for this particular issue, or posting on public message forums locally. E-mail is private, comments and postings on other websites are "commentary", and the impact of the internet on political campaigns will continue. Not even a hiccup - in this case.

Is this fun or what?
posted by Broadsheet @ 11:40 PM  
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