Bloomberg to Bloggers (Us): Stop Dumbing Down Society; We're Trying, Mr. Mayor!


On Wikipedia, a blog is defined as a "discussion or informational site published on the World Wide Web and consisting of discrete entries ("posts") typically displayed in reverse chronological order (the most recent post appears first). As you're reading this, you are on the Village Voice's Runnin' Scared news blog and this is a post about how Bloomberg thinks this said post, and others like it, have "dumbed down" the populace. We live in the post-post-modern age; think 'meta' for a second.

In an interview with The Atlantic, the Hozziner criticized people like us (the terrible, horrible, no good, very bad bloggers) for lessening the national intelligence on how we perceive, understand and react to news. However, the Mayor is still unsure just exactly what a blog is. This lack of definition was seen in his inability to distinguish a blog from a newspaper: "I don't know what the difference between a blog and a newspaper is... sometimes they have different standards, even under the same logo and name."

A key part in Bloomberg's argument - and he's certainly not the only one to believe this - is that the 'blogosphere' (2006, can you hear me?) creates this overload of information where the truth disappears somewhere in the vapor of the Interwebs. And this may be true but it underlies a main motive of what the blogs are meant to do: take a news story, analyze its players and come to a conclusion beyond the headline.

This is exactly what I'm doing right now (or at least trying to do) with this story about Bloomberg's anti-blog rhetoric. Everything is 'meta,' remember?

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Norwegian Blogger to Americans: 'What if it Was You Who Didn't Have Any Butter?'

Tommy ponders his butter-less Christmas
If you are like most Americans, you are blissfully unaware of the Norwegian butter crisis. To help you catch up, here is a comprehensive recap and analysis: Norway is almost out of butter. You probably didn't think about this as you slathered golden pads of greasy joy on your fluffy pancakes this morning. Perhaps you would be more inclined to care if the crisis had a face. Enter Tommy, a blogger from Oslo, who asks in a video both heartfelt and heartbreaking, "What if I came home to you and took your butter from your fridge?" Check out Tommy's plea after the jump.

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Murdoch Pie-Thrower Blogging From Jail

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Jonathan May-Bowles, the man who famously threw a pie in the face of Rupert Murdoch during the media mogul's hearing last month, has just updated his blog from jail. Bowles, who often goes by the name "Jonnie Marbles," posts on a blogspot domain called "Anarch*ish*." He has posted twice since being sentenced and gives a look into his world during his six-week stint in Wandsworth Prison.

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CBS Discovers Blogs Like It's 1999

CBS has this awesome vintage report from the '90s today. It's about blogs, or as people used to say, "weblogs," and how they're gaining power and clout and whatnot. Interesting to see how new and exciting it was back in the beginning. LOL, the "blogosphere."

Hold up, the dateline says this story is from June 12, 2011. That must be...a mistake?

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Andrew Sullivan Shares Reader's Elaborate Sex Dream Starring Andrew Sullivan

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Yesterday on Andrew Sullivan's blog over at the Daily Beast, the august blog king shared a small example of how a "blogger's relationship to his readers can get a little strange." I'll say, Andrew. I'll say. More »

Blogger Fined $60,000 for Telling the Truth

John Hoff (via)
A Minneapolis blogger was ordered on Friday to pay $60,000 in damages to an ex-community leader who lost his job because of the blogger's reporting -- even though that reporting was accurate. John Hoff connected Jerry Moore, who was employed by the University of Minnesota to study mortgage foreclosures, to a mortgage fraud. Even though the accusations turned out to be true, the jury ruled against Hoff in a suit and awarded Moore $35,000 in lost wages and $25,000 for emotional distress.

It was a bad day for the First Amendment.

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Today Will Be Fun: Good Morning, New York Times Readers!

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If you came here from this thing, and you're visiting for the first time, I'd like to welcome you to the Village Voice on behalf of Village Voice Media, this Shady Mexican Dude Named Slim, and the rest of the Runnin' Scared staff!

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