The discussion gets more interesting: Blogging about blogging, part deux

No, this is not a repeat post; this is “The Empire Strikes Back” version (sort of) to my last post, Blogging about blogging.

In that previous entry I linked to a March 12 post — and a great follow-up — by Howard Owens of GateHouse Media. With the first post, Owens responded to Dallas Maverick’s owner Mark Cuban‘s explanation (March 10) of why he banned bloggers in the Mavs locker room.

Here are some of Cuban’s comments from a March 13 post that came a day after Owens’ remarks, most likely aimed at the general response to his March 10 announcement:

  • “…newspapers having ‘bloggers’ is easily one of the many bad decisions that newspapers have made over the past 10 years.”
  • “Never, ever, ever consider something that any literate human being with Internet access can create in under 5 minutes to be a product or service that can in any way differentiate your business.” [My reaction: really?]
  • “A blog is a blog is a blog is a blog.”
  • “if I were marketing for them [The New York Times], I would be doing everything I could to send the message that ‘The NY Times does not have blogs, we have Real Time Reports from the most qualified reporters in the world.’ “

I comprehend his point regarding the Real Time Reports title, but this idea still seems contradictory to his “a blog is a blog is a blog” statement.

The Times’ Saul Hansell responded earlier this evening with What I’ve Learned as a Blogger for The New York Times. Here are some of his points:

  • “I’d say that blog is the name of a format for information and opinion that is roughly analogous to ‘column’ or ‘newsletter.’ The format itself doesn’t tell you whether the content is pedestrian or inflammatory, impressionistic or deeply researched.”
  • “…blogs are part of a conversation”
  • “…blogs can be a great extension to articles reported initially for the newspaper”
  • “One of the traditions of this place is an aversion to euphemisms. So call it whatever you want, but if it links like a blog, and is open like a blog, and interacts like a blog, then it is a blog.”

These are all right on the mark, as is one of Owens’ concluding remarks, which came before Cuba’s more recent post: “So Cuban sells bloggers short, sadly.”

Weigh in: What do you think of all these opinions? With whom do you agree?

2 thoughts on “The discussion gets more interesting: Blogging about blogging, part deux”

  1. Hey Greg –
    Nice post. I am little curious about this observation though: “I comprehend his point regarding the Real Time Reports title, but this idea still seems contradictory to his “a blog is a blog is a blog” statement.”

    Well, that would be correct. It’s intended to be contradictory. He is saying that blogs — as a whole — are a commodity. Anyone can do it, and only a relatively small percentage can hold an audience. For the NY Times, he is saying, the opportunity is to differentiate lies in the quality of its journalism.

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