On the road today

I’ll be traveling today and most likely won’t be posting. I’ll try to catch up with comments once or twice. Play nice.

Audio of panel on journalism and social media

Thanks to four excellent panelists and an interested and engaged audience, we had a great time last night at a discussion titled “Are Blogs and Twitter Improving the Dissemination of Information and News?”

The panel was held at the historic Vilna Shul on Beacon Hill — a bit of a nostalgia trip for me, as I lived less than a block away in 1979-’80.

I’ve posted an MP3 of the discussion. There’s a lot of reverb, and it is difficult to hear members of the audience, who did not use the mic. My apologies. The panelists, in the order in which they spoke, were:

And thanks to Doug Levin, who put together the program.

Talking about journalism and new media

Next Wednesday, Sept. 16, I’ll be moderating an all-star panel on journalism, blogging and social media. Titled “Are Blogs and Twitter Improving the Dissemination of Information and News?,” the panel will feature:

With that many bright minds in the room, I may have to wear shades.

The program will take place from 6 to 8 p.m. at the Vilna Shul, located on Beacon Hill at 18 Phillips St. Please join us.

All-important food-related update: Doug Levin, who’s organizing the event, asks that you send an e-mail to doug {at} vilnashul {dot} com if you’re planning on coming so that he can order enough food. If you’re not looking to eat, you could show up at about 6:45, when the program will begin.

Archives now online

I’ve just finished bringing the Published Work page up to date. And, with that, I’m happy to say that the new Media Nation site has moved out of beta. I’ve still got some improvements in mind, and suggestions are always welcome.

Welcome to Media Nation’s new home

I ended up moving more quickly than I had intended. But as of today, this is the new permanent home of Media Nation. After four years on Blogger.com, I decided I wanted a better-looking blog with the greater functionality offered by WordPress. Over time, I plan to consolidate my various other Web presences here.

Thank you to everyone for your comments and advice on the new look and feel. I agree with those who say the photo — taken in the booth at WBZ-TV (Channel 4) while political analyst Jon Keller was interviewing U.S. Rep. Stephen Lynch — is  distracting. No offense to Keller and Lynch; the fault is entirely the photographer’s. At some point I will come up with a better image.

Please adjust your bookmarks and your RSS subscriptions.

Many thanks to my former student John Guilfoil, the founder and editor of Blast Magazine, who helped me with the set-up process and is now assisting with tweaks to the design.

Tweaking away: What I know about CSS would not fill a tiny thimble. But I’ve managed to boost the body-type size by 5 percent and improve the contrast a bit.

Media Nation on hiatus

I’m writing this from the newsroom of “Beat the Press,” and will be running around for the rest of the day. Tomorrow I leave for a five-day backpacking trip. So don’t look for any new posts until late next week.

I’ve turned on comment moderation, but I won’t be here to moderate. In other words, you won’t be able to post a new comment until I get back. So get outside, folks.

What’s the matter with Cleveland?

In my commentary for the Guardian, I take on the latest bad idea to come out of the Cleveland Plain Dealer — reader representative Ted Diadiun’s widely mocked claim that bloggers are “pipsqueaks” who steal content.

Commenting on comments with Keller

WBZ-TV (Channel 4) political analyst Jon Keller will be interviewing Doug Bailey and me about Bailey’s column in today’s Boston Globe, in which he argues that newspaper comments are worthless. (They are if you’re going to do them the way the Globe and the Boston Herald do them. But we’ll talk.)

The segment should pop up on the 11 p.m. news.

And by the way, has anyone yet figured out the identity of the anonymous blogger whom Bailey attacked?

Thursday update: Here’s the link to Keller’s story.

An anonymous straw man

Doug Bailey want you to know there’s a local blog out there that’s not as reliable as maybe it should be. (Imagine that.) But he doesn’t want you to know what the blog is. Bailey, a former Boston Globe staffer-turned-media consultant, writes on the Globe’s op-ed page:

I recently contacted a blog that has apparently gained a reputation as an “authoritative source” on local news to point out an outrageously inaccurate — and easily verifiable — item posted on the site, attributed to one of its many “insiders.” The editor of the site conceded to me his “inside” information had actually come from an anonymous posting he saw on a newspaper website. If this wasn’t outrageous enough, this site has developed a following among traditional media reporters who apparently believe this blogger is wired and who regularly republish his missives unaware that his “exclusive” sources come from anonymous comments on their own websites. The identities of the “insiders” are unknown even to the original blogger.

Without the name of the blog and its author, and a chance for him to respond, the value of Bailey’s anecdote is approximately zero. Let’s have it, Doug. And let’s see the Globe give his target an opportunity to defend himself.

Global Voices and worldwide citizen media


My online-journalism video tour continues with Solana Larsen, managing editor of Global Voices Online, a project that tracks bloggers around the world. I interviewed Larsen on June 9 at her Brooklyn apartment.

On April 23 I interviewed Global Voices’ Central Asia editor, Adil Nurmakov, while I was attending the Eurasian Media Forum in Almaty, Kazakhstan.