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Thursday, February 17, 2005

Blogging for fun and whistleblowing...

So I'm getting my daily dose of the news last night (ok, I was drinking and watching the Daily Show, fine, are you happy?) when I sat up and took notice on something. Thanks to recent comments by my favorite Communications Media Expert, I stopped and paid attention to a segment on Blogging. Jon was talking about how in three separate incidents recently, things reported on by the "mainstream" media have been exposed as "falsities" by bloggers. I believe they were an executive from CNN fired for "off-the-record" comments made at some event, a news reporter at a Bush press meeting that's actually a gay porn site owner, and of course the tragedy of Rather-gate.

{As an aside here, can we all make a commitment as a people to stop using the word "gate" after something when a political scandal is involved. Its been over 30 years for goodness sakes, let it die people. I mean, when a president makes a goof we don't go around saying, "Well that's another 'blow-job in the oval office' isn't it!"... ...Maybe we should}

I think the big thing about this that caught my attention was the enmity that "mainstream" media has shown towards bloggers. They talked about lack of credentials, no accountability, blah blah blah. It sounded to me that they were worried that bloggers were going to replace the news media. Imagine a world of no journalists! (Its easy if you try) All news is reported on by common everyday citizens on the street. Imagine, instead of a journalist telling you about a bank robbery, you actually have pictures (from a cell phone) and up to the minute commentary from an actual hostage in the bank.

But I think what really got me thinking was that most of these people upset about it, are all "old fuddy-duddies" (to use an industry term). Is it possible that these people just don't understand exactly what blogging is? I mean, even my 28 year old roommate is confused as to the point of it all. How can we expect 80 year old men (even 40 year old women) to realized what a non-item blogging is. User's have been blogging for years now, but finally the media has turned its ugly head in our direction. Employees getting fired for blogging is all over the news, bloggers in Iraq were a big thing for awhile, and even my mom knows the word Blog now.

I recently have experienced a little technological shell shock myself. For a while I was begining to feeling alienated by technology, all this texting and im'ing and silly rigamarole, what's it all about. Then I realized that I'm not an 80 year old man and it was time to get up to date on all the new things in the best way I know how... ...ask someone younger than me. Granted, I already has a grasp on most of this stuff, I instant messaged in college, back when all we had was ICQ, I had texted a few times, but always avoided it because it cost me .15 a message, and I sent out daily updates to my friends before "web log" was even a thought in Ted Blog's (the inventor of the blog of course) mind. ( though these were sent by e-mail, not posted on the web. If interested I am reposting my old "tim-o-grams" at So these things weren't exactly new to me, they had just grown and changed and left me behind in the dust, like X-box... or Playstation 2 (all those buttons? just give me a directional pad and an A and B button). So I've since tried to get up to date, I now text like an old pro, and have sent files over IM.

But I worry to myself, what will happen when I'm 60 and I don't understand how to program the remote on my virtual TV, or can't use the "squeezers" to type for my heads up display computer glasses because the arthritis is acting up? (of course the future will hold virtual reality porn, but no cure for arthritis or cancer) Will I be one of those old men complaining about "kids these days"? Will I be too proud to ask my 8 year-old granddaughter for help getting my fridge to order more milk? Its proven that as you get older, your mind is not as easily able to form new connections of neurons (or whatever the "brain particles" are called). Is it true you can't teach an old dog new tricks? Am I going to answer all these questions I just typed? Probably not, because I don't know. I hope I will be able to continually strive to learn to use the newest technologies. I hope I never get too proud to ask "how does this work?".

The truth is, I love technology, I love everything about it. I'm like that guy in the Circuit City commercial everytime I go into the store, I just run off with a crazed look in my eye. I'm looking for the girl who will be the one to tell me "We could go bigger!" when I've already bought the 58 inch flat screen. I can't imagine a time when I will not be trying to learn how it all works. But for the rest of you old fogey's out there, let the kids wear their pants as baggy as they like, because they are the ones that will be running the computers that manage your Social Security checks one day!

So bloggers are now infamous, and Stephen Colbert even mentioned "". The only thing I found weird is that I could find no article on CNN, Yahoo, or BBCNews to post here to give you an example. It looks like "mainstream" media just isn't ready to admit there is a new contender in the reporting business!

"It is not the years in your life, but the life in your years that counts." -Adlai Stevenson

"The only source of knowledge is experience." -Albert Einstein

ok one more

"The old believe everything, the middle-aged suspect everything, the young know everything. " -Oscar Wilde

Posted by timothy :: Direct Link 1 comments

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