Aw, Could Not Get Your Ship Out

Pulling up to the trough of dumbassery and whining at the Journalism Crack Barn today, I realize the defensiveness of non-bloggers is really starting to get on my damn nerves: Are blogs diluting the role of journalists?

Karen Breslau: Absolutely not. Who was the last blogger to get kidnapped — or worse — on their way to an interview in Iraq or Pakistan? Blogs aren’t diluting the role of journalists: they are diluting the size and attention of the more affluent spectrum of the audience. (And truth be told, that disproportiately affects journalists… since we are a gossip-driven bunch who spend our days staring at a screen). And yes, mea culpa: I, like everyone else, have my own favorite blogs to plow through before I get down to the business of the day. But c’mon, blogs are an entertaining echo chamber: At the end of the day how much do you really gain from reading about what someone else wrote about what someone else said about what someone else did? There comes a point in every blog-orgy where I snap myself to my senses and wonder: Why am I reading someone else’s e-mail? I’ve got too much of my own to deal with.

Also, we say “fuck” a lot. Fuck. Fuck fuck. Fuckity. Fuckers.

Truly, I do not get this. Why the need to denigrate? Why the simultaneous need to admit to reading blogs? Why the assumption that I want your damn job and that you have to remind me I couldn’t do what you do, regardless of the fact that that statement’s bullshit?

Honestly, print journos and fellow recovering print journos, what the fuck is your problem?

I mean, okay, the question is stupid. What does “diluting the role of journalists” mean? Making journalism less important? Less influential? Less tasty? What? But even allowing for the dumb interviewer, why immediately jump to the “HAVE YOU EVER SEEN A MASS GRAVE?” extreme to prove that no blogger can possibly have a dick as large as John Burns’? First of all, when’s the last time Ms. Breslau was kidnapped on her way to a presser or party or whatever? If the standard of what makes a journalist is having been kidnapped, there’s about a dozen journalists, and everybody else is fapping around being stenographers. If that kind of one-upmanship is what proves who’s a RealJournalist ™, I suppose during the past 10 years of my life, I should have called myself something else.

Second, it’s not true that bloggers do not commit journalism. Chris Albritton. John Aravosis. The FireDogLake staff. Our Very Own Scout. What Riverbend does is no different than those “letters from a correspondent” that the Chicago Tribune publishes every Sunday wherein their overseas guy bitches about the food or talks about something he saw on the way to an assignment. If you’re going to overreact, Ms. Breslau, at least try to make sure your overcompensatory assertion is a little bit true.

Third, I like the admission that she reads blogs but sees no value in them. That’s always funny. A year ago Mr. A and I were at yet another tiresome academic blogging panel that featured no bloggers, and he was needling the panelists, all of whom asserted that blogs were not important. “You’re all up there talking about them,” Mr. A pointed out. What is that? If you like something, just say you like it, instead of going on and on about how “Well, really it’s trivial, but late at night when nobody’s looking, I like to log on to Digby.” It sounds like me trying to justify why I’ve watched “King Arthur” six times in the past month by talking about its historical accuracy. It’s a Bruckheimer film. I’m there for the swordfighting, the music, and the hot. Get over it.

Fourth, for chrissakes. Quit being such insecure little titty babies already. If you were really secure in the value of what you did you’d look at most political opinion blogs (since that’s what most people mean when they say “blogs,” not mommy blogs or knitting blogs or whatever) and say, “They provide me with insight and passion and I enjoy them the way I enjoy many other things without feeling like they took away my mojo in the night by sucking it out through my manicure.”