Posts from July 9, 2004

AOL sucks, redux

AOL sucks, redux

: All week, my email would not work through AOL as my ISP, as I lamented below. Tried every suggestion. Nothing worked. Then, today, it just started working today.

So what ISP should I use when I’m on the road instead?

Blogger in power

Blogger in power

: Arts blogger, WSJ critic, and nice guy Terry Teachout just got a presidential appointment to the National Council on the Arts. He’ll have to be approved by the Senate. Maybe he can explain what a blog is.

Birds of a feather

Birds of a feather

: Is it any surprise that The Guardian wrote not a puff-piece review but a puff-piece editorial about Fahrenheit 9/11? No, not a surprise at all.

DNC’s blogging screwup

DNC’s blogging screwup

: Here’s the latest on the DNC’s blogging screwup, in which bloggers were invited and then uninvited (background here): The DNC posts a mealy-mouthed, excuse-riddled, and not altogether credible explanation about the mess.

Bottom line: The DNC screwed up. Big time. They took an opportunity to be the party of the people and transparency and vision and in one swoop became the party of screwups. Nice going, dorks.

The solution is worse than the problem: disinviting bloggers is downright stupid. You should reinivite them. Tell them you ran out of hotel rooms, OK; they’re bloggers; they’ll cope. But now, left out of the party, they will only snipe… and with damned good cause.

And if the RNC has an ounce of sense, which they do, they’ll invite all those disinvited bloggers to their convention. That’ll be great PR, eh, guys?

I’d say this in the comments on the DNC blog… if they allowed comments. What are you afraid of, guys?

If I had applied to go to the convention and had gotten credentials, I would now be threatening to stay away unless the uninvited bloggers were reinvited. Even news organizations — snakey as they can be — would stand together on such principle. So should we bloggers. So I think some of the bloggers who are going should threaten to stay home until those disinvited bloggers are reinvited.

: UPDATE: The story is seeping into mainstream media. CBS Marketwatch just reported on it.

: I won’t buy any excuses from the DNC until I see complete lists of:

1. Bloggers invited

2. Bloggers not invited

3. Bloggers disinvited.

Until then, we cannot know whether this was a matter of slant or space.

We demand transparency. That’s what bloggers do. And we bloggers should be standing together to demand this information — and also to demand that the DNC reinvite the disinvited bloggers. They wouldn’t dare treat mainstream press that way. How dare they treat citizen journalists that way?

And it doesn’t really matter what the cause is. Having f’ed up this badly, the thing to do is to fix it by inviting all the disinvited bloggers to assure that there is no exclusion on any basis and also to reveal the complete lists of bloggers so we can judge the DNC’s process.

: And, by the way, the reason I don’t buy the excuses from the DNC: The number of applicants has nothing to do with the space available. Surely, they sat down at the beginning and decided how many they could let in and what the criteria were. Simple logic.

I just watched a Kerry/Edwards event on WNBC, where the campaign people kept old Gabe Pressman from interviewing ladies in the audience and asked Gabe to turn his camera off. He refused. Good for Gabe. Bad for them.

Transparency, people, transparency! This is the age of transparency.

Let me add that I’m saying all this because I want the party do it this right. It’s a tragedy to muff it up.

The Daily Stern

The Daily Stern

: MORE CROCK FROM THE COMMISSIONER: Michael Powell starts “blogging” at Always On but it’s laughable on so many levels.

Always On is no more a blog than Michael Powell is a blogger. It’s a paper that can’t afford paper and Powell is writing op-eds that no paper would apparently take. It’s just the self-justifying blatherings of a failed, lame-duck bureacrat.

And it’s badly written. How’s this for a lead: “Traditionally, the economic justification for government regulation of an industry was market failure such as monopoly, negative externalities, or unmet social goals.” Negative externalities? Sounds like a zit to me.

But more than anything, it’s just bullshit. Here’s Powell the one-time deregulator still trying to sing out of the deregulation hymnbook still even while he has converted to another church. Ernie Miller neatly takes him apart on technology and deregulation. And, of course, Powell has long since given up defending the deregulation that matters most in America: keeping government out of regulating what its citizens can and can’t say.

If Powell stood on principle, if he truly were the deregulator he tries to look like in his apparently valedictory self-portrait, he would have stood against regulation in media ownership and in technology and in speech. But he didn’t. He was as hypocritical as he was politically inept. And, wow, Always On has him. Lucky them.

: SAY THE F WORD AND PLAY FCC ROULETTE: Ernie Miller also alerts us to Broadcasting & Cable coverage of a speech by the FCC enforcement chief who first ruled that Bono’s F word was OK and who was overruled by the FCC and who now tries to argue that the F word isn’t really outlawed. Go ahead. Say it on the air. He dares you.