: Andrew Sullivan practically takes credit for getting rid of Howell Raines. Sorry, Andy, but all your carping about Raines went nowhere until (1) Jayson Blair, lying pile of stinking shit that he is, humiliated the paper, (2) Raines screwed up the handling of l’affair Blair, and (3) the newsroom saw the opening to revolt against an unpopular tyrant and succeeded.

I also expect to hear a lot of self-congratulation in the blog neighborhood over Raines. I’d like to think that blogs had impact on another story — and I do think their nagging kept air in this balloon — but, again, it was Blair and Raines and a newsroom that got rid of Raines.

: Says Mickey Kaus:

If this had happened 10 years ago, when the Internet didn’t exist, Raines would still be running the place. The Times staff would be just as unhappy, but they’d be unable to instantaneously organize and vent their displeasure on Romenesko and elsewhere. It was this suddenly-transparent internal opposition, more than the constant pummeling from bloggers, that brought Raines down.


  • Andrew Sullivan didn’t take credit for taking down Raines, “practically” or otherwise. That’s a complete mischaracterization of his post. Its good that the link is posted, so anyone can look for themselves, and I hope they do. The actual post was very similar in tone and spirit to the Mickey Kaus one that you seem to agree with. I’m very confused as to the different way you spin the two. (Kaus seems to be saying that Romenesko etc. had more of an effect than bloggers, but he’s not saying that bloggers didn’t have an effect. Sullivan is simply emphasizing bloggers more, but the post is mostly about the blogosphere’s contribution in general and not him in particular)
    I’ve been inspired to write a long rant on some dissapointlingly elitist, cronyist, defensive, circling-the-wagons type posts on this site and at Virginia Postrel’s site regarding the NYT, and lowly bloggers temerity in attacking Big Media.
    Its not finished yet, but when it is I hope its a good articulation of why we rabble have attacked the NYT (and some other parts of “Big Media”) with such vehemence, and may lead to some greater understanding. When I stopped by and saw this, I couldn’t stop myself from commenting. This post is part and parcel of what I’m talking about. And why would you quote Mickey Kaus anyway? From what I’ve been reading on Kausfiles lately, he seems to fit the definition of a “Media Bigot” exactly.

  • I do have a post out on the blogosphere’s credit it here. I think you’re dead on. This is simillar to the Lott episode. Within the blogosphere there will be self congratulations, but the “old” media gets the mantlepiece trophy’s. Lest we not forget, NYT’s rivals played a big role as well. I’m sure they are all broken up about it, NOT!

  • This one is not so simple. As one of the first ones out of the box on this issue this morning, I tried to give some credit to the blogosphere, while pointing that the internal struggles at the Times, which Jeff J. correcty underscores. But in the end, this is partly a perceptions game–and I believe the perceived power of blogs will only increase from this. They are the new kid in town–and the world and the media loves the new kid… until, as we say in H’wood, the new new kid makes his appearance.

  • “…Blair, lying pile of stinking shit that he is…”
    Easy lad, you’ll frighten the livestock…