Thomas Fitzgerald on his "Mac Technology Blog" has an interesting piece titled:
Why Bloggers Aren’t Journalists, And why The Mainstream Press Does Not have an Apple Bias.
Of particular need for dissection are these comments:
[referring to this] ... But what Mr. Scoble has done, because he is pissed at Apple over a macbook needing repair, is to question the integrity of some of the most respected publications in the US and some of the most noted journalists in the world.
Not that I'm defending Scoble ... but what's wrong with questioning someone's integrity? If it is a reasonable opinion without intent of being malicious ... there's nothing wrong. There is however a fine line between reason and unreasonable.
[Fitzgerald]Take the New York Times for example. Regarded around the world as a bastion of true journalism, the real world’s “Daily Planet” if you will. Their technology columnist, David Pogue, one of the most widely known tech journalists in the English speaking world, and Scoble is accusing him, his colleagues, and the paper of pimping themselves for an exclusive with Apple. Apart from the fact that it is absolutely ridiculous, it is highly offensive, both to those hard working journalists and to those of us who value objectivity in their reporting. Is it the fault of the New York Times, or the Wall Street Journal that Apple frequently makes good products that capture the attention of the public? Does that mean they are going to bias their reporting to sell a few extra copies.
This is certainly an opinion ... The New York Times, while certainly respected around the world is also known for being very politically left and often pushing a left leaning agenda. I doubt seriously that any of Rush Limbaugh's audience holds the New York Times in the same regard as Fitzgerald does. I don't respect the editors of The New York Times. I do respect Pogue though ... I consider him a standout that is working for one of the world's most reknown publications.
[Fitzgerald] So is he basically miffed because Apple doesn’t treat him and fellow bloggers like a reporter from the Times? (Apart from the fact that anyone can purchase a ticket to the Apple Keynotes at Macworld.) Well, talk about a self-fulfilling prophecy. I consider myself a blogger and I don’t get offended because I’m not given a press pass to every Apple event, and I write mostly pro Apple stories. But then I’m not a journalist and certainly don’t claim to be. And with this kind of diatribe, if I worked at Apple, I certainly wouldn’t give him a press pass now.
Apple doesn't issue the press passes for events (usually) ... MacWorld Expo passes are granted to the press from IDG World Expos on a first come first serve with credential basis. The Engadget blog staff gets press passes. The staff from DIGG (before it was a mega hit) was just in front of me and my best friend in line for the Keynote at MacWorld Expo 2006. I have gotten a press pass in years past. Maybe they don't consider Scoble or Fitzgerald worthy of the credentialed first come first served. Scoble doesn't get a press pass as a blogger because he's an idiot. Rarely does he contribute to the promotion or understanding of information or technology. Sites like Engadget and Slashdot (also considered a blog) do. Besides ... seating is finite at these events. Last year's MacWorld Expo had 3 spillover rooms and dozens (possibly 100's) were turned away from seeing the keynote.
I commented on his blog with the following:
I don't think "most bloggers" want to be known as journalists. I certainly don't in my blogging. However, I do want my first ammendment rights protected. The Lanham Act, which will almost certainly be updated with case study of the Apple vs Bloggers case and my own case (Bidzirk vs Smith), is very clear ... it's not whether you are a journalist or an award winning reporter. It is the intent of the article. In other words, did you start a blog solely to cover the hatred you have for a company or is the article posted a pattern of your typical critique where no one single business is constantly singled out? Are there other blogs and information outlets reporting the same thing? The Lanham Act, which clarifies the first ammendment, as it pertains to patent, service mark, and trademark says that ALL FORMS OF NEWS & NEWS COMMENTARY are protected. This would include your typical; news outlets, but would also include blogs. I comment on Apple Computer and eBay news at my BLOG. David Pogue comments on Technology Industry news at The New York Times. While he is certainly more educated than me, won many more pretigious awards than me, and known the world over ... I am no less a commentator or editorial news delivery outlet than he is. A rant about a business, service, company, or product serves as a helpful study for consumers. Most of the time, you can read between the lines of any ranting blog post and see the true intent of the post. By looking at the writing style of the author ... often you can tell if they are delivering useful information or if they are on a maniacal witch hunt so as to defame the business.