aTypical Joe: a gay New Yorker living in the rural South
Sunday, May 08, 2005
Google does movie reviews
What won’t they think of next? Google aggregates movie reviews.
Via Dan Gillmore whose commenters point out this was introduced 3 or 4 weeks ago, praise Google’s “Microsoft-like rise along with their Apple-like talent and expertise” and offer up some…
# Get showtimes and theaters for a particular movie:
hitch san francisco ca
# Get movie details:
# Find the top movies playing near you and their theater location:
movie: movies 94103
movie: films san francisco ca
# Find the theaters near you and their movie showtimes of the top movies:
movie: theaters 94103
movie: showtimes san francisco ca
I read the Adam Cohen piece on blogging ethics in the Times last night and was bugged some by his framing of the statement that “if [bloggers] want to reform the American media, that is going to have to include reforming themselves.” I see media “reform” as more by-product than grand plan and fully expect “ethics guidelines and prominently posted corrections policies” or some variation on the theme in a future iteration of the blog. But otherwise I found the column pretty innocuous.
Seeing the blogosphere as a collective endeavour where the “hive mind” is the appropriate unit of analysis is something most traditional journalists have a lot of trouble with, because this is a radically different conception from their own media, which seek to be definitive at the level of rival publications. But as Dan Gillmor says, blogs are a seminar, not a lecture.
But Worstall’s view of why blogger ethics are undesirable leaves a lot to be desired. Worstall says that the blogosphere seeks truth at a system level, and that restrictive ethics at the individual level is therefore unimportant or even counter-productive...Actually, it could be argued that in that respect, “MSM” journalism is actually a lot like the blogosphere. Individual stories build up a body of material in the public realm that is picked up by other outlets. Errors of fact are exposed by rival media. Stories develop over time and across outlets. The investigative, book-length version of events corrects the errors hidden away in the cuttings library.
He goes on to explain “that ethics applied to individuals are often about defending the credibility of the system as a whole” and, using journalism as his example, suggests that there’s “enlightened self-interest underlying all those ethics codes.” He concludes:
Both Worstall and Cohen are wrong. Bloggers need ethics, but not because they should be more like professional journos. Bloggers need ethics because it essential for the blogosphere as a whole to retain and expand the influence they already have on public discussion. The blog form will only flourish if it is seen by its readers to have some predictable level of credibility.
And in Garrison Keillor’s Confessions of a Listener there is this that I can only hope is true:
After the iPod takes half the radio audience and satellite radio subtracts half of the remainder and Internet radio gets a third of the rest and Clear Channel has to start cutting its losses and selling off frequencies, good-neighbor radio will come back. People do enjoy being spoken to by other people who are alive and who live within a few miles of you.
Building a liberal media
Air Jesus by Mariah Blake on AlterNet is an excellent look at the rise of Christian Broadcasting. Religious stations now outnumber every other format except country music and news-talk, they outnumber rock, classical, hip-hop, R&B, soul, and jazz stations combined. Religious broadcasters are a powerful political and cultural force, and the role that evangelicals are credited with playing in the recent election only improves their power.
Amanda Marcotte at Pandagon read the piece and came away thinking:
...religious fundamentalists [are] building their empires on the work done by leftists and progressives. Becoming the media is a very 60s and on leftist idea, from teach-ins to ‘zines and now onto blogs. And it’s one that the right has stolen from us.
I’d say they emulated us, the most sincere form of flattery, not stolen--except in as much as we’ve abdicated. But I think this is a dead-on observation, and not only true in media. They’re doing it in the schools and the courts too.
Back to media:
But the Christian right has done exactly what many of us feverently hope to do--they built up an influential media structure that wields huge political influence. And while there is no doubt that they are hurting America and Christianity, there is a lesson to be learned from them, which is that becoming the media is possible.
Every attempt from the left to expand media influence is met with doubts and cynicism, in large part due to traditions of debate and dissent. But while raising questions is an activity that should never stop, it’s also important to be very supportive of efforts to become the media.
What makes me enthusiastic is I see way more support for liberal media than there was even a year ago, mostly because Air America’s success quieted the haters and the cynics, many of whom actually listen to some AA shows. The idea that consistent, national media from an unapologetic liberal/progressive perspective is necessary to gain political power is really catching on. So consider this blog post just some more cheerleading for this trend.
I’m ready to join the cheerleading team but I have this one reservation: MONEY. The thing the Christians have going for them that will be much more difficult for liberals to pull off is a phone bank that lights up when the liberal equivalent of the 700 Club flashes an 800 number on the screen.
Then again, the Dean campaign’s fundraising experience gives reason for hope on that front. Let’s make it happen.