Dan Berger’s latest issue of Vintage Experiences just arrived.
One of his topics, “The Demise of Newspapers,” touched off this blog entry, because it was already bubbling under the surface for me, too, as an issue.
Dan wrote, “In a recent Wall Street Journal article, author Paul Mulshine wrote about the fading of the press. He decried what seems to be replacing it, the blogosphere, an amorphous electronic sea of blather that has a few tiny snippets of brilliance.”
Let me digress for a moment, because it’s worth it… Recently, I was watching a CNN talking heads discussion on the subject of blogs. The panel was questioning whether or not many bloggers are just writing willy-nilly dribble [I’m paraphrasing here], and this might be ruining the future of newspapers.
One of the panelist, who is a Constitutional attorney, said, “I’d like to remind you all that when Thomas Jefferson crafted the First Amendment, he wrote it precisely with independent journaling in mind. He didn’t say “journalist (reporting facts),” he said “journaling (reporting opinions).” The first Amendment was created to do the following:
The First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution is also the first section of the Bill of Rights. It is arguably the most important part of the U.S. Constitution, as it guarantees freedoms of religion, speech, writing and publishing, peaceful assembly, and the freedom to raise grievances with the Government. In addition, it requires that a wall of separation be maintained between church and state. It reads:
“Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.”
Today’s journalist are working for newspaper companies, many of whom (Rupert Murdoch, for example) give money to lobbyists, who push through their agendas on Capitol Hill.
So, I ponder, can the freedom of speech then be crafted its purist form within his network?
When I worked in radio, I wanted to do one of my Modern Health segments on how bad soda is for anyone’s health. I had learned that for each ounce of soda, there’s one teaspoon of sugar. Equated: 10 ounces of soda = 10 teaspoons of sugar.
Just imagine that for those who have one can of soda a day! Today, it’s now reported that if you have one soda a day for a year, that equals a 10 pound weight gain each year. Over a period of 10 years, is it any wonder that we have obesity as a national crisis?
Before my segment aired, the general manager called me into her office. She told me that I couldn’t run with that story, because a major soda company paid many salaries within the radio station.
Censure, pure and simple…
On this blog, I have no advertisers to worry about. My fellow wine bloggers, who aren’t overwhelmed with advertisers on their sites, also have nothing to worry about… It’s just freedom of speech at its best, returning for a cycle of time. Once people figure out how to moneitze their sites, we’ll be back to censure, trust me.
Those who have a gift for writing will continue to do so, and will flourish. While their subjects and blog focus might change, their passion for writing won’t. They’ll also refine what Paul Mulshine considers “an amorphous electronic sea of blather.”
A perfect example of where I believe electronic media is headed is this site… SeriouslyMedia. I accidently fell upon it, as I was Google searching on Jeff Miller. I found him on this site, in an aggregated story from wine-blog.
I dug deeper into this site, to better understand it. When I read what John Merrells is offering his readers, I was honestly humbled to find myself there. It read, “A seriouslymedia site should simply be the best starting place for a person to engage with those publishers making the world pay attention to their subject.”
I honestly believe that if bloggers keep “making the world pay attention to their subjects,” cream will rise to the top, and there’s room for it all.
How one’s compensated for that? Well, that’s another subject.