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It's interesting to watch the dynamic between traditional media and the blogosphere generally.

It almost seems like bloggers act as a sort of democratic check on a previously closed media system. A few examples:

1. Conservative bloggers are credited with single-handedly discrediting the nomination of Harriet Miers to the Supreme Court.

2. That whole story about Bush's poor record in the National Guard, only to have some blogger run a type analysis on the commander's letter, and prove that it was a fake, eliciting an apology on national TV by... whoever that network anchorman was...

3. The whole concept of blogs like Get Religion, which regularly takes the MSM to task for shallow reporting on religious issues.

4. Bloggers discovering that a lot of photos being used by media outlets to portray the war in Lebanon are actually the products of creative use of photoshop.

5. And then the SL Trib effectively "getting scooped" by Millenial Star in addressing what is really a groundbreaking development in LDS PR.

There seem to be a lot of other examples, but those are just the ones I can think of off the top of my head.

Seth, I think that you're dead on. The MSM has lost its monopoly on news. As with the breakup of other monopolies, there's an extremist element decrying the new decentralization.

Remember when AT&T broke up? Even conservatives like George Will were saying that nothing good would come of it, because the breakup was fixing something that wasn't broken.

Well, the news from the MSM has been broken for some time--as the reporting on the Forged National Guard documents aptly demonstrated. I'm quite pleased that it's monopoly on news coverage is ended.

Incidentally, CBS never apologized for using forged documents. They apologized for not investigating the legitimacy of the "alleged" forgeries more closely. Moreover, as Andrew Sullivan pointed out, they also never apologized for demonstrating bad faith by stonewalling the story for two weeks in the hope that they could weather the storm. CBS, at least, is still broken. At least something good came of it: it ended Dan Rather's career.

I wouldn't make too much of the "quiet" manner of the post on homosexuality. I think the nature of the internet and the speed with which word spreads about matters of interest such as this makes the posting at the lds.org Newsroom quite effective in getting this to those who are interested.

Also, the Oaks/Wickman "interview" doesn't really announce any new policy or positions, while it does go into a lot of length concerning the Church position on some issues. This makes it a poor candidate for the letter to bishops or the GC route.

I would guess that PFS was well aware of the interview within a day of M* posting about it, and probably because M* or one of the other blogs that linked to it. Yes, she is a lurker! Hi Peggy!

I'm not sure why she didn't report on it immediately, but it might have been in order to observe the drama on the blogs in order to make it a part of the story. The online reaction has certainly been voluminous and has covered the spectrum from full acceptance to outright rejection. It has also addressed every point raised in the interview.

Imagine the work she would have had to go through without the blogs to make the report on the interview interesting. She would have had to contact a bunch of people who might have interesting opinions on the interview, actually direct them to it, and then get their response back. Note that they would know that their response was probably going to be in the paper, which might temper it.

Of course she did some of this contacting Bro. Jeppson and others, but look at how much easier the bloggers have made it for her. They've spouted off their somewhat anonymous comments without regard to where they might end up. As someone whose comments have been poorly quoted by Peggy in the past I should take care to be more careful with my posts, but I am not. I spew whatever I happen to think at the moment. I would guess that many others are about as careful as I am. What does this give Peggy? Ready packaged drama!

And look how easy the online community has made the distribution of the interview itself. Anyone who is online and potentially interested in the issue has been made aware of it. The 99% of members that don't care for this level of detail on the issue have been spared the task of having to read it or even be aware of it.

I think that this example has worked out well for the Church, the blogs, and the MSM.

DKL and Seth... While I don't disagree with your thesis that the MSM often misses the boat, I find it ironic that all of your examples are "liberal" failures. There are plenty of "conservative" failures too (e.g., the drumbeat on weapons of mass destruction, etc. leading up to the Iraq war).

So, basically, what you're saying is that we bloggers are pretty powerful and useful, right?

Please share Marc.

Yes annegb,

And I even showered this morning too. Doesn't get much better than that.

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