Everybody wants to be something. We tell people that we like to read, or we like to paint, or we like to write, or we like computers..we all want some identity with what we think we are. Here is the reality – writers write, painters paint, potters pot, and bloggers blog. But bloggers use the written word – so bloggers are just writers who use a particular publishing medium. Television news people refer to themselves as TV journalists – some exercise this claim better than others – but they all claim journalism as their profession.
We have entered the world of journalism – a blog is a web log, a journal. There are people with degrees in journalism that work in advertising for Wal Mart. Are they journalists? Are we journalists? Well, we keep a journal and we publish it, does that qualify? About any night of the week I can walk four blocks to a local park and there are a bunch of men in uniforms playing baseball (or softball). The uniforms have numbers and there is usually some descriptor of the team name, like “Harry’s Barber Shop.” Are they baseball players? After the game they drop the tailgates on their pickups and open the coolers and have intellectual discussions about the finer qualities of the game.
There is a weekly television show called “Reliable Sources.” They have ‘professional’ journalists sitting around analyzing the content of the week’s efforts at journalism. These professional folks do not regularly agree on the ethics or values or presentation of news by paid journalists. They are much like the men sitting on the tailgates of the trucks, debating the qualities and nuances of some human endeavor.
So are we bloggers journalists? I have been at this blogging thing for about six weeks – I would not say that I am versed in the universe of the bloggers- what do they call it – the blogosphere? But I have read many blogs. Some of them are very well done. Some of them probably meet the standards set by professional journalism.
Personally – I feel that you and I are beginning to settle in – beginning to get a sense of right and wrong – beginning to understand the pitfalls of sloppy journalism – or sloppy blogging. We are fortunate that we both enjoy writing and that we have some life experience to share.
Here is my question to you? Can you and I demonstrate – at least on our blog – that bloggers can be taken seriously? Others have achieved this lofty goal – I think we can – but we may have to play at the local ball park, then the minor leagues, and then who knows….