The Truth About Blogs

Obama is dissing economic blogs, saying they are unreliable.

The editor of the Aurora Sentinel says that there is “very little real news on blogs”.

Time magazine asks “Does the News Industry Deserve a Bailout?”, and trumpets the heroic work of mainstream newspapers:

Politicians have every reason to want to see print media fail . . . too many governors and congressmen have lost jobs after newspaper investigations to make the relationship between Fourth Estate and politicians a comfortable one. A neutered press would benefit a number of elected officials.

But the whole debate about blogs versus mainstream media is nonsense.

In fact, many of the world’s top PhD economics professors and financial advisors have their own blogs. For example (in no particular order):

And the conclusions of economists who don’t have their own blogs are collected by other bloggers and on YouTube videos. For example, this blog rounds up everything Marc Faber says.

The same is true in every other field: politics, science, history, international relations, etc.

So what is “news”? What the largest newspapers choose to cover? Or what various leading experts are saying – and oftentimes heatedly debating one against the other?

As blogger Michael Rivero pointed out years ago, mainstream newspapers aren’t losing readers because of the Internet as an abstract new medium. They are losing readers because they have become nothing but official stenographers for the powers-that-be, and people have lost all faith in them.

Indeed, only 5% of the pundits discussing various government bailout plans on cable news shows are real economists. Why not hear what real economists and financial experts say?

To the extent that blogs offer actual news and the mainstream media does not, the latter will continue to lose eyeballs and ad revenues to the former.

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  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/01904446704748470736 Gary

    Well said George Washington!

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/13156080225918567393 The Grey Tiger

    While I think Obama’s statement on economic blogs was off base, he is not necessarily incorrect. There are as many bad blogs as good ones and you know as well as I how much time we spend trying to look at all of them. I somehow doubt the president has time to do much cruising on the net. However the LEAKED MEMO SHOWS that somebody is looking at the sites. http://thegreytiger.wordpress.com/2009/03/08/so-you-think-the-bailouts-arent-working-your-absolutely-right/If I were President and was concerned about more views , I’d probably pick up the phone and say Rahm get me Stilgitz on the phone, or Roubini.How soon you all forget the last president didn’t evne send eamil.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/09464394826506964361 Erik

    Digghttp://digg.com/political_opinion/The_Truth_About_Blogs_George_WashingtonReddithttp://www.reddit.com/r/reddit.com/comments/83l58/the_truth_about_blogs_george_washington/great points. Who needs the corporate-establishment mouthpiece masquerading as a “4th estate” when we have the web? Sure, some of the same lying and dissembling MSM have broken important stories; but since they can’t be trusted to report the whole truth all the time, We the People need the blogs (ourselves) to keep them honest, too. No sign yet of US media reporting on US company Baxter Intl mixing H5N1 Bird Flu with Human Flu and shipping it to 18 countries- but it’s gone viral on the web.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/09464394826506964361 Erik

    slight correction; Bloomberg web-based financial news source reported on this Feb 24; the original link is scrubbed, with no link to their update, which doesn't come up in a google news search, but can be found by searching their site for H5N1 and Baxter:Original:http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601124&sid=aiqmSoL6sVbk&refer=homeBaxter Sent Bird Flu Virus to European Labs by Error (Update2) http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=newsarchive&sid=aTo3LbhcA75ISo where is the US 4th estate reporting print, TV and radio on the disruption of this possible global pandemic?

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/13366613120020045235 Sam

    I have to disagree with, “They are losing readers because they have become nothing but official stenographers for the powers-that-be, and people have lost all faith in them.”I read online sites rather than newspapers because: 1) They are free, 2) I can read them at work, 3) I can read them anytime, in my home, 4) I can check out news sources from 8 different nations around the globe without leaving my chair, 5) bloggers underscore globalization – the power of the individual to reach the masses with technology.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/13631831301034918405 PrissyPatriot

    Yup, the main stream corporate owned media will die like the dinosaurs they are…simply because they didn’t tell the truth and bloggers tried to get the real word around.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/04177712363057680756 decora

    They are right, though, about how many politicians have gotten in trouble because of newspaper reporters. Somehow I have a feeling the ‘cyberspace’ will figure out some way to pay people to dig up the dirt on politicians, but I am a little afraid of the ‘dead zone’ between the time of this mythical development, and the time when the old-time newspapers die, with their excellent skills and knowledge, of how to get inside organizations and ferret out the truth…of how to treat sources and get sources to trust them and open up…. not to mention the high importance of having connections and personal relationships with people inside those organizations, relationships which can take decades, and which bloggers might not have developed as well as newspaper people did. The other problem is that bloggers are not publishers… consider Watergate, those stories only happened because the Washington Post publishers and owners had the guts to stand up to the president of the free world and his pressure campaign. Will web and blog hosting companies have the same incentive or philosophical background to do this? or will they just shut down the blog and erase every trace of its contents?

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/15673418865926403671 Dredd

    Well said George!

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/15673418865926403671 Dredd

    Blogs know that the “American” in AIG is a ruse … not real … AIG originated in China …http://blogdredd.blogspot.com/2009/03/american-international-group-aig.html

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/06239272889883147962 Sham

    The reason the Bloomberg article was scrubbed is it removed all references to Biotest (the company with the 100% dead ferrets)http://biotest.euListen to my interview on third hour of Jeff Rense last night or my interview with Dr Deagle from yesterday, available here:http://www.gcnlive.com/pubpod/nutri_med/pcast.phpclick on “0317093.mp3″ or direct link…http://67.212.67.19/PubPodcast//nutri_med/0317093.mp3

 

 

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