Daily Blog Roundup: Monday, July 26, 2004
Dave L. Sifry
Special to CNN.com
Editor's Note: Dave L. Sifry is the CEO and Founder of Technorati, a Web-based company that tracks weblogs, or personal journals, on the Internet.
(CNN) -- This year, for the first time, webloggers were credentialed to cover a national political convention. In addition to the bloggers posting from Boston at the Democratic National Convention, there were dozens of other voices -- on all sides of the political spectrum -- blogging on what they heard and saw in Boston.
This crew of bloggers commented on Al Gore, Teresa Heinz Kerry and the role of new technologies being used by media to engage dialogue on issues and ideas -- including "moblogs" -- short for mobile weblogs. Here are some highlights from bloggers who filed from inside and outside the convention hall: The Gore speech: Jerome Armstrong of MyDD.com posted the text of Al Gore's speech before he gave it. This was important not because it lifted back the curtain on yet one more aspect of the political journalistic process. Journalists have always had advance texts of major speeches handed to them, and if you watch closely at some presidential addresses, you'll see members of Congress flipping through the prepared text as it's being given. Now, thanks to a blogger, the public can also read along.The politics of bunny ears and Photoshop: A number of webloggers made fun of John Kerry's recent trip to the Kennedy Space Center. Probably the most creative use of photo-editing software goes to Blogs for Bush Shove it?: Conservative webloggers were also abuzz about Teresa Heinz Kerry's recent "Shove it" comment made to a reporter at an event on Sunday. That said, her comment did not seem to pick up critical mass, as only 307 posts were made about it on Monday, out of over 275,000 weblog posts for the day -- more than 10,000 per hour.The "new new" convention: Jay Rosen, NYU journalism professor, again proved why he has a following online. Rosen digs into the journalistic habit of referring to conventions past, arguing that the only way many reporters can give meaning to an event that has been emptied of most of its spontaneity by scripting and pre-determined outcomes is by relating it to the olden days when conventions actually made news. But then he helps explain why it was that for many journalists the "blogging phenomenon" was a story in itself at this convention. The superficial answer, he says, is that this is one of the only "new" things happening here, at least worth a "nice sidebar." But then Rosen adds that he thinks there is a deeper answer. "Blogging represents -- at least for purposes of the convention -- what things are becoming."Henry Waxman and Howard Dean: Two politicians who went out of their way to pass a message to the convention-credentialed webloggers were U.S. Rep. Henry Waxman (D-Calif.) and former Vermont Governor Howard Dean, who both invited webloggers to special morning breakfasts. Matt Stoller has a good report on Waxman's views, and Howard Dean arrived to talk about the effect of weblogs on his campaign, Pandragon reports. Cameraphone coverage: Leave it to six smart USC students and their professor to take a technology to a new level. They're walking the convention floor with cameraphones, taking instant snapshots along with commentary and posting the information as it happens. The Wireless Election Connection Moblog looks to be one of the surprise hits of the weblog coverage here at the convention.A libertarian weighs in: Libertarian blogger Matt Welch, who writes for Reason magazine, gives a thought-provoking roundup on the first night. He writes, "The biggest applause lines tonight came when Jimmy Carter and Al Gore slowed down their delivery, ratcheted up the southern growl, and condemned the Bush Administration's war