This Looks (And Reads) Familiar

November 15, 2005

Blogs = weB LOGS. Many of the big name power blogs were started as an attempt to hold the MSM in check. An example would be Michelle Malkin, Hugh Hewitt, and Instapundit (All three are referenced in the story below). These folks (and a few dozen others like them) really know their stuff, and prove it day after day.

But almost a year ago many of the big boys decided it was their turn for MSM status. I guess they were not content with their own reporting. Maybe they tired of getting the glory without the paycheck. Who knows? Sometime last year an idea was put forth that set the blog world on its head: Pajamas Media formed and said “Let’s create our own little world of dedicated bloggers to cover events. We’ll even pay them for their contributions.” Or, put another way, since they (as of the last time I read about them) would execute full editorial control over the content from contributors: They became the MSM.

The editorial board for Pajamas is quite possibly the most impressive group of journalists I have seen together: Michael Barone, Austin Bay, Tim Blair, Tammy Bruce, Marc Cooper, David Corn, Richard Fernandez, Jose Guardia, Jane Hall, Larry Kudlow, Michael Ledeen, Clifford May, John Podhoretz, Claudia Rosett.

Even those I know are outright liberals, I still have respect for them and how they craft their words. These aren’t stupid people. In fact, they are some of the brightest minds the media (any media) has to offer. But would I really want Jane Hall editing my work? No thanks. That led to a mini-revolt last year when several high profile blogs wondered about Pajamas intentions, and voicing my argument as well, began to question how content would be picked and showcased. Also, what would the rule be for outside submissions or fact checking?

Pajama sidestepped the questions, kept a low profile outside the blog world, and crept back to its dark hiding place where it slowly gathered forces, and most importantly, venture capital. It looks like this is a done deal and they could be on their way to become The online powerhouse for news and opinion. This might actually turn online media around the way Fox did for cable news. Since we are moving in that direction with fewer newspaper subscriptions being sold each year, this may not be a bad idea. But to me, the idea of a blog is freedom to question, to tell, and to rant. Pajama limits much of this as it strives to become a polished image of the beast it hated in the first place.

It sounds like it will end up with editorial control confined to a few. This could lead to a site that is one of the driest wastelands online. Another way to put it is: It just might turn out to be MSM-light, with half the taste and calories as your average blog.

“Ooooooh, Bitter Blog Face!!!!”

Pajama Media story

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One Response to “This Looks (And Reads) Familiar”

  1. Peakah Says:

    It’s inevitable my friend…

    Good thing WE’RE out here eh?
    sha right.


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