Wednesday, January 12, 2005

Hit and Sunk

Dan (and the MSM) takes a direct hit

When you play the classic board game Battleship, you don’t expect to get the Aircraft Carrier on your first hit. You expect it’s the two-hole supply ship or three-hole sub when your opponent first cries “it’s a hit.”

But the CBS National Guard story, and the counterattack from the blogosphere, has turned into a direct hit not just of CBS News but of the entire MSM Battlegroup. You can tell it's fatal because the rats are jumping ship.

Howard Fineman, Mr. Newsweek, Mr. MSNBC, and Mr. Inside-the-Beltway, is the first to don the orange vest and jump overboard into the inflatable life raft:

“A political party is dying before our eyes — and I don't mean the Democrats. I'm talking about the ‘mainstream media,’ which is being destroyed by the opposition (or worse, the casual disdain) of George Bush's Republican Party; by competition from other news outlets (led by the internet and Fox's canny Roger Ailes); and by its own fraying journalistic standards.

The moment it made air it began to fall apart, and eventually was shredded by factions within the (MSM) itself, conservative national outlets and by the new opposition party that is emerging: The Blogger Nation. It's hard to know now who, if anyone, in the ‘media’ has any credibility.”

Not exactly the words of someone who wants to go down with the ship. Howard Kurtz, media watchdog for the Washington post, continues:

“President Bush was reelected, and Dan Rather wasn't.” calling it a “ setback for a network, and the Mainstream Media.”

What the Mainstream Media is just learning, and what many of us have known all along, is that media consumers understand the concept of synthesis: by relying on one’s own ability to gather information from more than one source, a greater internal truth is achieved. Through a few clicks on a cross-section of the newswires, a few clicks on global and regional perspectives, a few clicks on the bloggers, a few clicks on bulletin board commentary, a few clicks on reference sites, and, voilayou’ve done more fact-checking than Dan Rather on a 60 Minutes news segment.

Oh, and add one more click on this. You’ll want to get the full story. . .