An NPR editor shot her mouth off on the air about citizen speech online, pretty stupidly. Steve Gillard has the most two-fisted response, especially considering he takes the additional step of rebuffing her racially-loaded charge that blogs are "white-guy backslapping networks." Aramando at Kos has a series of examples of where The All Important Editors dropped the ball.
On the other hand, everone knows I really would benefit from a copy desk, and there's a difference between readers who can comment and editors. Reader/commenters are below the writer in terms of power; editors are above. That matters.
I really can't wait until the Corporate media, the Independent for-profit media and the Amateur media realize that no one has a lock on the Truth, and everyone has a important role to play in creating Public Intelligence in the 21st Century. I'm not holding my breath, though.
We're in the early stages, and a lot of people who are very comfortable with the way things were are going to kick and scream against change for years. Likewise many who are bitter at having been long shut out of the public debate are going to revel in every bloody takedown.
My own position is ticklish. I'm with the invaders, no use denying that. At the same time, I disagree with some of the things they're doing. Mainly, I'm finding that I don't really care about institutional legitimacy. Too many compromises, not enough payoff. My philosophy is much more along the lines of HST's experiment with Freak Power. Go balls-out at the swine and see how many people jump on board.
That's the story of the early Howard Dean, by the way.
To break it down, I believe that the A-list bloggers and the Media pundits are fighting over turf that is decreasing in value, and will continue to do so. It's still the most important single piece of turf out there, but my own calculus says it's not worth investment. I think it will work out better for some of us new-schoolers to build our own power bases, to construct our own consensus engines, to grow the market for Public participation, activie citizenship, politics and democracy.
Hence The Book. Because lord knows there's a lot of room to expand this bitch.