Wednesday, November 21, 2007

The Professionals Win Again

Everywhere we turn, mainstream journalists are pouring into the blogosphere like Sooners across a prairie. Some of them are even receiving "training in social media and blogging," so that they can do what many other bloggers cannot: get paid for blogging at work.

For me blogging started as a way to bring to public light conditions and problems largely ignored by the offline media. It was a helpful alternative that sometimes forced traditional media to pay attention (if we were lucky).

Now the mainstreamers are flooding the zone online, ignoring just as much as they did before, but getting paid for what the rest of us do with our spare time. It seems to me that the blogosphere is beginning to reify and harden into a crusty realm of paid specialists, and thus the free exchange of ideas is beginning to shrivel like Apache Plume in a bone-dry Pecos arroyo.

And, given the mainstream media's will-to-merge, it likely won't be long before non-mainstream writers and bloggers are being slowed, side-tracked, and blocked by AT&T and Comcast, who will partner with the corporations that pay the mainstream media bloggers to flood the zone. One sees a whole new level of dystopia on the horizon.

Forget what they say about journalism disappearing before social media; it is already latching on to social media like a parasite invades a host.

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