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August 9, 2007

Hinterland Diary

John Stoehr

Beware the 'rhetoric of relativism' . . .

If there is no objective truth, but only subjective truth (hence your five-car pile-up analogy) -- then what difference does it make if someone was a reporter or not? I am able to state subjective truth at a moment's notice -- it's always true for me!

A reader on a column about the decline of American newspapers by the late Molly Ivins. This comment takes issue with Ivins' assertion that bloggers are no replacement for what traditional journalistic organizations do. She wrote:

Bloggers are not news-gatherers, but opinion-mongers. I have long argued that no one should be allowed to write opinion without spending years as a reporter -- nothing like interviewing all four eyewitnesses to an automobile accident and then trying to write an accurate account of what happened.
From "The Slow Death of Newspapers" published March 23, 2006.

Posted by John Stoehr at August 9, 2007 7:17 AM


Why are bloggers treated as an undifferentiated mass? Taken that way, their average characteristics will naturally be roughly those of the average citizen, i.e. untrained in almost everything. I love reading Molly Ivins, but I have very little interest in the average columnist's output. The point is, we can discriminate in what we read, each of us on the basis of our own criteria. That may seem a difficult task to someone new to the blogosphere, but it's not really different from deciding which magazines and newspapers you'll subscribe to. Those who care to will learn how, those who don't will be less well informed or less engaged.

Posted by: Steve Durbin at August 9, 2007 10:00 AM