Cool paper focusing on political blogs from the time period over the 2004 US pres election (via). The above illustration plots Democrat (blue) and Republican (red) blogs in relation to one another (purple and orange lines). They make a similar observation to me about the relationship between ‘Old Media’ and ‘New Media’:
Weblogs may be read by only a minority of Americans, but their influence extends beyond their readership through their interaction with national mainstream media. During the months preceding the election, there were several cases in which political blogs served to complement mainstream media by either breaking stories first or by fact-checking news stories. For example, bloggers first linked to Swiftvets.comâ€™s anti-Kerry video in late July and kept the accusations alive, until late August, when John Kerry responded to their claims, bringing mainstream media coverage. In another example, bloggers questioned CBS Newsâ€™ credibility over the memos purportedly alleging preferential treatment toward President Bush during the Vietnam War. Powerline broke the story on September 9th, launching a flurry of discussions across political blogs and beyond. Dan Rather apologized later in the month. A more light-hearted example was the post-presidential debate question “Was Bush Wired?” Salon.com was the first to ask the question on October 810, which was then quickly taken up by bloggers such as Wonkette and PoliticalWire.com, and then addressed the next day by the mainstream media.
My argument locates the blogosphere within the media apparatus, but on the reception side of the ‘media event’ of the election. Blogs literally short-circuited the development of the long media event of the election. That is great, but then I want to extend my argument to the everyday practice of blogging. The various ‘events’ which constitute and punctuate the respective ‘everyday lifeworlds’ of bloggers are interrogated in a similar fashion. Oooh, which reminds me, I need to knock up a final draft of my Blogstalk paper by the end of March.