Malcolm Gladwell thinks bloggers are 'parasites'. He lectured recently at the New York Library, and defended the old media in the following way:
While former Time Inc. editor in chief Norman Pearlstine and Slate founder Michael Kinsley predicted doom and gloom for newspapers in the Internet age, Gladwell sang the praises of paper products and derided bloggers as "parasites" who feed on newspapers to survive. If newspapers die, "What are they [the bloggers] going to do? Get jobs?" Gladwell mocked.
(New York Daily News, towards the end of the article). H/T to Blogebrity.
Is that true? Are bloggers nothing more than news-sucking slugs living off the avails of all the hard work done by MSM?
Well, in our defence, we're cheaper, faster and occasionally more innovative.
When I think back to the media ban about the Gomery proceedings, it was actually a U.S. blog that scooped the MSM for information. Some newspapers even made cloaked references to the blog by mentioning phrases such as 'where Captain Kirk might go if he wanted to rest', and so on. That was the only way they could direct readers to information - they had to leech off the blog.
I actually see blogging and MSM as partners in a symbiotic relationship. We can complement each other, and that is certainly the case lately, with the Toronto Sun having a daily "Best of the Blogs" feature, and even the Globe and Mail noting the importance of some Liberal bloggers as they scored interviews with various leadership candidates.
Some high-profile bloggers, such as Steve Janke and Stephen Taylor even do their own investigative journalism and interviews on a continuing basis. They have working relationships with various sources including MSM reporters.
There is no doubt that many bloggers, including yours truly, rely heavily on news items and editorials from various types of media.
However, as I commented recently at Chucker Canuk's, the real benefit to society is that we're not driving our friends and family crazy with our constant rants! We have a safe outlet that is saving the public health care system a pile of dough!!!