Enough! A Détente for Journalists and Bloggers
By: Suzanne McGee, Director, Fusion PR
The last line of a New York Times piece by Tim Arango jolted me – “I think we’re hitting the ridiculous button here,” said John Cherwa, chair of the legal affairs committee for the Associated Press Sports Editors and the sports projects editor at The Orlando Sentinel. “We’re getting tired of everyone trying to tell us how to do our business.”
Entitled “Tension Over Sports Blogging,” the article reports on the blurring of lines between journalists and bloggers who cover sports. While this battle is disputed, it is indicative of the power that the Internet gives individuals – consumer and reporter. As this relatively new in-equality seems to exist, many professionals are struggling with the competition posed by fans with a passionate drive that lends itself to prolific commentary online. This, along with an attitude of “if he can do it, so can I,” leads many people to conclude that they too can be a reporter, as well as a critic.
While I don’t agree that one of my relatives can blog today and be just as insightful as some of the leading SI reporters, there is a medium for this group of fledgling writers – the blogosphere. The media is already enduring this onslaught, but needs to find a way to better coexist. I do think that Cherwa’s complaint seems trite in an Internet era that is not going away. A natural reciprocity was born with the advent of blogging that should be explored between the many different generators of “coverage.” All of which will only make the profession better.