Wednesday, July 22, 2009

There's a blogger in my soup

This year's Reader's Digest poll of NZ's most trusted professions lists journalists 34th, just ahead of astrologers/psychics, real estate agents, politicians, car salesmen, sex workers and telemarketers respectively. In times of frustration, where can a distrusted journo put the boot in? That's where "bloggers" come in.

According to Barry Colman, we're sucking all the bread and butter out of the financial papers with our "amateur, untrained, unqualified... columns of unsubstantiated “facts” and hysterical opinion." Linda Clark holds bloggers partly responsible for the salacious and prurient MSM reportage of the Weatherston trial (from 15:50 in). In short, bloggers are toejam to more than a few journos.

Now I can't speak on behalf of some imaginary Bloggers' Union. That management title is about as nonsensical as Chief Executive Officer of the Anarchists or Tea Lady for the VRWC. From my perspective, this blog isn't run in competition with MSM. Different estates for one thing. I'm on Third (the Commons), MSM is on the Fourth Estate.

Secondly, I'm more of a canary in a mine than a journalist. Apart from my inability to write shorthand or drink substantial quantities of hospitality, I'd suggest my role is more psychic than newshound. Even that comes with a proviso. Unlike most psychic gimmickry, I don't do Grief Porn like the distateful Weatherston trial. I'm quite content leaving the MSM selling murder for toothpaste adtime.

If this blog had a credo it would be: FFS Be Interesting. That's it.