According to Dan's post:
Bloggers who take themselves seriously and consider themselves “citizen journalists” need a reality check. Unless you’re doing the ground level development of sources and documentation, you are playing at journalism.It's a good point, and I don't disagree with that statement. What I disagreed upon was that a blogger (or anyone else for that matter) is relieved of all responsibility simply by virtue of not being a "journalist."
The debate stems from a previous post where Dan roasted Kris Kobach for landing a gig at UMKC teaching immigration law. Except, the whole thing might be made up.
It seemed Dan thought it okay to make up this kind of claim and then have an opinion on it. Certainly he has the right to do so. However, I commented that it's irresponsible to post something like this without noting the source or at least suggesting that it might not be true.
I was called out for posting links to news articles and then giving an opinion on them. But in my view, there is a substantial difference between providing a link and then commenting on it and making up a "fact" and then commenting on it.
Again, we all have the right to post pretty much anything on our blogs. But it really doesn't take much effort to be responsible in the low-standards world of blogging. Why not provide a link? It's pretty standard practice. What's the harm in a little attribution?
To be fair to Dan, I trust him and I don't think his post was a complete fabrication. I just wish he would have provided some kind of attribution.
Then again, to Dan's point, this is a blog we're talking about, not The Wall Street Journal.
I'm just surprised that a call for responsibility is such a radical viewpoint.
tagged: blog, blogging, journalism, Wall Street Journal, responsibility