Is CNN Calling For Curbs On Free Speech?

On July 23, 2010, CNN anchors Kyra Phillips and John Roberts discussed on air the idea that bloggers should be somehow “held accountable” or perhaps regulated in some way. Here’s the video of that exchange.

It’s no secret that CNN and other so-called mainstream media outlets, both broadcast and print, have had for some time now an ongoing loss of viewers and readers. A number of traditional journalists from time to time have had and expressed an almost open hostility towards bloggers and the Internet. They perceive the Internet as a threat to their business models, and their vaunted self-appointed job as information “gatekeepers.”

If you look back over the past few years, almost every major story, particularly scandal stories, originated first on blogs. In many cases the mainstream media were dragged kicking and screaming into reporting stories. The clearly forged National Guard documents that ultimately ended up forcing CBS to fire evening news anchor Dan Rather comes to mind from a few years ago. Bloggers quickly picked up on the fact that the supposed National Guard documents had been typed up in the default template for Microsoft Word and then ran through a fax and/or copy machine a number of times to make the documents look dirty and/or old. The trouble was, Microsoft Word didn’t exist in 1973. If it weren’t for bloggers, this story would have likely never come to public light, and what is clearly a forgery and a made-up story would have passed into the public mind as the truth.

Should free speech be curbed? Should bloggers somehow be licensed or officially regulated in what is purportedly a free country? Should we be forced to get our news from “professional” or even “licensed” journalists?

Will the Advertising Insanity Ever Stop?

When will the insanity in banner advertising stop. Over the past couple of weeks every time I visit CNN.com or MSNBC.com I get assaulted by the biggest most annoying banner ads I have ever seen.

This complete disregard for the readers experience tells me that the companies involved know nothing on how to properly engage audiences.  I have never used ad blocking software but ads such as these are driving me towards installing ad blocking software for the first time.

I sure hope the media properties are getting a premium on these sorts of ads because the goodwill that they are losing is significant.

Don’t let old media drive up Gas costs

I sure hope the IQ of new media consumers is higher than that of the average old media watcher. I do not watch much news on TV. It is a waste of time. Well last night my friend is telling me about gas going up. We are in Georgia. So apparently the hurricane has disrupted a refinery in the Gulf of Mexico ….again. The talking heads on the news are saying gas will be in shorter supply and the price will rise. They say you might want to fill up before it happens. Well this sends the thundering herd of idiots out to line up at the gas stations. What do you think happens when people are lined up to buy a product whether or not there is a shortage? The freaking price is going up big time. If I am a barber & I see a line of people out my shop doors, I only have time to do so many haircuts. So my time becomes more valuable so I can raise the price. Supply & demand people! I have no doubt the news people are right when they say prices will rise but they cause a panic by promoting fear as usual. So the prices go way beyond what they would naturally. New media providers are hopefully more responsible than the old school TV people. They don’t have to promote one bad thing after another to keep consumers watching or listening. What if CNN said that drinking bleach is absolutely necessary for good health? I bet 5% of the population would wake up dead the next morning! The herd mentality has to stop. If all I can do as a part of new media content is call out people for doing dumb things so be it.