Little Green Footballs

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

Big time

Wow, Pajamas Media is bigger than we thought:

A group of bloggers including mainstream journalists from outlets such as CNBC, The Nation and The New York Times are banding together to strike a blow at established media and pick up some ad dollars in the process.

Operating initially as Pajamas Media--a play on criticism that bloggers are "just a bunch of guys in their pajamas"--the site will offer original content and links to affiliate sites written by more than 70 bloggers, as well as basic news feeds from sources like The Associated Press, said novelist and screenwriter Roger L. Simon, one of the founders.

Contributors include: CNBC's Larry Kudlow; U.S. News & World Report senior writer Michael Barone; Nation columnist David Corn; Glenn Reynolds of fame; New York Post columnist and Fox News contributor John Podhoretz; Adam Bellow, Random House editor and son of Nobel Prize-winner Saul Bellow; Clifford D. May, ex-New York Times editor and current president of the Foundation for the Defense of Democracies think tank; Jane Hall, panelist of Fox News Watch; and co-founder Charles Johnson, author of the Little Green Footballs blog.

Let's see. What do CNBC, U.S. News & World Report, the New York Post, Fox News, and the New York Times have in common?

(Hint: it's an three-letter acronym, consisting of two M's surrounding a lonely S.)

But wait, there's more!
Though the roster, which included Reynolds and Fox News, may at first glance seem weighted toward the conservative side, Simon insisted it would encompass viewpoints from across the political spectrum.

"We believe that the power of the blogosphere can transcend the old-fashioned traditional left-right dichotomy in its search for truth," he said.

One suspects his idea of "transcending the old-fashioned left-right dichotomy" could involve something on the order of silencing non-rightist voices altogether -- hey presto, no more dichotomy! -- but we shall see.
"Our purpose is to garner advertising income by aggregation," he said, "but more importantly, to leverage blogs and raise their credibility higher than they are now." Unlike professional journalists, bloggers don't have to follow standard newsroom rules governing sources and bias.

"In some senses we will compete with mainstream media. News will be generated through blogs because we have bloggers in every corner of the planet," [Charles] Johnson said. "We'll have the fan base of a rock and roll band...(that can) give instant feedback on stories that you post. That's a valuable part of it, the community aspect."

But how will Charles' own "community" survive the transition? Without his devoted corps of yes-men and -women, LGF would be almost entirely valueless. But with them -- and who could imagine LGF without the lizardoids? -- he's saddled with a gigantic, putrescent albatross that could burst at any moment and shower him, and his cherished dreams of burying the hated MSM forever, with a torrent of toxic goo.

Whatever happens, it's bound to be interesting. And we'll be watching. That's what we do.

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