Someone I know who does a fair bit of online work for this paper, whose initials are Gene Weingarten, said this afternoon, “Journalism is journalism, and you need people who have an idea what they are doing, even if they are just fulminating on the web…Doing the chat in real time is a little dangerous and a little terrifying. There’s no editing, no lawyering, no time for contemplation, and all of that is coupled with an understood mandate to be as provocative as possible. The thing is instantaneous and haphazard, but not random or thoughtless. You’re relying on instincts to save you from a truly terrible blunder. Thirty years of journalism experience is not incidental to this process.”
Sigh. The plagiarism Ben committed was committed when he was a print journalist, you know, when he had editors and careful weighing and considering of facts and gatekeepers and whatever it is you’re blithering on about here.
The investigative uncovering of his wrongdoing was done by bloggers, those irresponsble online hit men who aren’t accountable to anybody.