The Rants of Issachar

Monday, April 04, 2005

Blogs and the media...

Well slashdot has had two stories recently about blogs that have picked my interest.

The first was a story that San Fransisco was going to attempt to regulate blogging. It seems like slashdot was blowing things out of proportion, (gee I'm shocked), but one of the posters brought up an interesting point. Blogs could have a serious effect on elections. The mess with bloggers catching Dan Rather on 60 Minutes in that badly forged memo scandal, is the strongest example I can think of. Combine this with campaign contribution limits and you have a problem. If a blogger creates a web page that has a large influence on an election, how do you regulate that? My hosting company is Canadian and I use my own name, but I could just as easily be hosted in the States with a pseudonym. How exactly do you enforce election spending limits with the internet in the picture? I don't think you can.

The second story was today about a blogger in the US breaking the Canadian publication ban on the Gomery Inquiry. Of course that gave us link the the blog that broke the ban in the first place. It's fairly obvious that Canadian publication bans simply don't apply outside of Canada. So is there any point to having a publication ban when we can easily get our news from outside the country?

Also does anyone else think that we're having an awful lot of publication bans these days? I didn't pay as much attention to this sort of thing when I was a kid, but I was pretty interested in politics and I simply don't remember having this many publication bans. It's like they've suddenly come into fashion right when they're becoming unenforceable.

Anyone have any thoughts?

:: posted by issachar, 10:45 PM


Posted by: Blogger Carla

2 words Gorman: 'exit polls'

blah blah blah, right will blame left, left will blame right. The point is the 'establishment', both political and media, is upset by 'something new'... a blogs certainly are quite a force. Journalists hate it because it's somewhere between journalism and gossip trash... but mostly because it often scoops their story. That's the real issue here... poor muffins... having to get with the times... having to accept news is going electronic. boo. 'we hate change.'

On the other hand, blogging presents new liability too... my theory is that standard internet liability would apply.

There's been tiffs in blogland about this before... the recent row between Warren Kinsella and Norman Spector comes to mind.

My first Issachar comment post! woot!
Blogger Carla, at Tue Apr 05, 05:47:00 AM PDT  

Posted by: Blogger issachar

Did you just w00t? :P

What's standard internet liability? I've read people arguing that you're liable in any country where someone accesses your info. Sounds like a bad idea to me. I'm not sure what else you can have except you're subject to the laws where you are and the the laws where the server is located.

And speaking of people who hate change, could the Globe and Mail, and the National Post please get with the times and let people access content online the way the NY Times does? There's no point referencing any Globe article on a blog because most people I know don't subscribe).
Blogger issachar, at Tue Apr 05, 12:35:00 PM PDT  

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