The Expanding Blogosphere
By Rachel Smolkin
Political blogs--online journals featuring commentary, often highly opinionated--have rapidly become a presence in the campaign landscape. Now some established news organizations are hiring established bloggers or creating their own. How much impact does this instant punditry have on mainstream political reporting?
When political bloggers bay in the blogosphere, do political reporters hear them?
The answer, I quickly learned, depends on four factors: how you define "political blog"; which political bloggers you mean; which political reporters you mean; and--not to go all Bill Clinton on you--what the meaning of "hear" is.
Blog, for the uninitiated, is shorthand for "Web log," online journals of thought and commentary. They feature a personal, distinctive voice, links to other sources and regular postings displayed in reverse chronological order with the newest entry first. Readers scroll down the screen to scan the blogs, which often include a place for reader input, archives of past entries and "blogrolls," lists of other blogs the author finds useful.
Political bloggers chew over the news of the day, frequently skewering journalists' coverage or spotlighting what they feel are undercovered stories. Objectivity is generally verboten in the blogosphere, although ideology tends to be less rigid than the partisan debates that play out so repetitiously in newspapers and on television. And bloggers are a clubby bunch, referencing and linking to each other even when ideologies clash.
Artículo completo en American Journalism Review