‘The Next Watergate Will Be Reported By the People’

Hell yes.

Anybody with opinions on the press should read the whole thing. It’s notable not only for smacking around people who bought the WMD argument but also for its praise of small papers doing local investigative work (let’s remember that government corruption occurs freely on the city/town level, where there are few reporters to keep tabs on how officials are spending tax money). At a time when most people (including most bloggers, and including me) only mean Big Media when they say The Media, this is one of the best summations of the state of journalism, with a little optimism thrown in, that I’ve read in a long time.

You don’t have to be big to do good journalism. And this is becoming more obvious as a new medium has appeared on the scene. Independent writers with weblogs (blogs) or websites are sometimes telling stories long before big media know what’s what. Bloggers find tidbits of information on the Web and link to it. As other bloggers read, they note other bits. Readers post comments to the blogs, and sometimes those comments lead to more news. New software called “news aggregators” can bring news from important blogs directly to a reader’s computer.

Link via Romenesko.