So I wake up this morning to find , courtesy of Steven Den Beste, that I part of my post on ActionFigureGate was quoted in a real life newspaper, The Post-Gazetter of Pittsburgh, Pa in an opinion column by Jack Kelly. The Post-Gazetter wrote:
But the Web logger Shannon Love (Chicago Boyz) wonders:
“Why were the major media so quick to disseminate pictures of an action figure as a genuine hostage photo?” More to the point, why are major media so quick to disseminate anything that a terrorist group, or purported terrorist group, releases? … For the terrorist, it is like being given millions of dollars in free advertising.”
See full attribution and everything! In hardcopy! Hooray!
But then things started to go down hill.
Before I continue my little tale of moral outrage let me observe that it is very interesting that while I have been quoted online several in forums like Instapundit which has a daily readership in the hundreds of thousands world wide, getting mentioned in hardcopy seems somehow more significant. Perhaps it is because we still feel that a newspaper is a more important medium because we all grew up with it or perhaps it is because if somebody has to decide to blow thousands of dollars putting something into hardcopy and physically distributing it to hundreds of thousands the very difficulty in doing so grants it significance. I think that blogs are to newspapers what newspapers are to words carved into the stone of a monument.
The harder it is to create and distribute the medium used to contain information i.e. newspaper, broadcast, internet, the less we value the actual information itself.
Now where was I? Oh, yeah, now I remember, things going down hill.
So I click over for my daily dose of Instapundit and find a link to a Jack Kelly column. I am rather pleased. An Instapundit link always means lots of attention. Imagine my surprise when I read the article linked to and find that it is the same column in another paper, The Toledo Blade and that the column now reads:
“It’s also interesting that the terrorists turned to the news media to recover lost momentum. Journalists who fell for these hoaxes may merely be idiots, and their silence about the implications of the hoaxes may simply be the by-product of embarrassment. But more to the point, why are major media so quick to disseminate anything that a terrorist group, or purported terrorist group, releases? For the terrorist, it is like being given millions of dollars in free advertising.”
No attributions, not even a single damn quote mark! It looks like Jack Kelly came up with the idea on his own. Of course, it is the Toledo Blade version of the article that Instapundit, Powerline and Hugh Hewett all link to.
Arrrrrrgh! I was so enraged I went outside to kick my dog! (Unfortunately, I don’t have a dog and I couldn’t catch my cats so I had to kick a neighbors dog which has created a secondary set of problems.)
I knew immediately that my ancient nemesis had returned. No, not Jack Kelly. Since the attribution is correct in the first column I know it is not his fault. It could only be those who harassed me throughout my entire academic career, those nitpicking human spellcheckers, those, “its to wordy,” snobs, those banes of Media accuracy everywhere:
It really clear in comparing the two articles that the flawed one in the Toledo Blade is about a third shorter. The editors (*spit*) ripped out my attribution to save space. The apparently believed that I would never find out about their crime but my internet eyes are everywhere!
It is not enough that editors or their counterparts in other media have been behind most of the media errors and scandals of the last few years. Now they start stealing from little old me!
I think I shall write a letter of complaint. But I won’t send it to the Toledo Blade. Instead, I shall call the wrath of the blogsphere down upon the heads of the editors like a curse of the ancient gods! I shall send it to Instapundit, Powerline and Hugh Hewett and anybody else I can find who links to the Toledo Blade column. I’ll let the grand deities of the blogsphere seek justice for me!
Bwaaa-ha-ha-ha! Release the hounds!
(Update: I notice the writing in this post is a little sloppy. Do you think someone could tighten it up a little for me? Thanks)
(Update: Whining gets results! Powerline altered the link to point to the The Post-Gazetter. Even better, they have anointed me the “propierter” of Chicago Boyz! Who knew? Alright your heard the man, the rest of you slacker boyz get back to work!)