Dept. of Dumb Headlines

Media Insiders Say
Internet Hurts Journalism

The media insiders were also asked about coverage of President Obama. Of 45 respondents, 71 percent say it has been “about right,” 22 percent say it’s been “too easy” and 7 percent say it has been “too tough.”

So, who counts as a “media insider”?

Respondents to the Atlantic/National Journal Media Insider’s Poll: Peter Beinart, Gloria Borger, David Brooks, Carl Cannon, Tucker Carlson, Jonathan Chait, Roger Cohen, Steve Coll, Sam Donaldson, Bob Edwards, James Fallows, Howard Fineman, Frank Foer, Ron Fournier, Jeffrey Goldberg, Jeff Greenfield, Glenn Greenwald, David Gregory, Mark Halperin, Christopher Hitchens, Al Hunt, Mort Kondracke, Jim Lehrer, Ruth Marcus, Joshua Micah Marshall, Chris Matthews, Jane Mayer, Doyle McManus, John Micklethwait, Dana Milbank, Markos Moulitsas, Katherine McIntire Peters, Todd Purdum, Cokie Roberts, Eugene Robinson, Tom Shoop, Roger Simon, Scott Simon, Ray Suarez, Nina Totenberg, Linda Wertheimer, Leon Wieseltier, Juan Williams, Judy Woodruff, Fareed Zakaria.

Commenters are invited to research that list and tell me how many of those people make their living as news reporters. (Excuse me: Glenn Greenwald? Markos Moulitsas?) Also, dig the special pleading:

The Internet has some plusses: It has widened the circle of those participating in the national debate. But it has mortally wounded the financial structure of the news business so that the cost of doing challenging, independent reporting has become all but prohibitive all over the world. It has blurred the line between opinion and fact and created a dynamic in which extreme thought flourishes while balanced judgment is imperiled.

In other words, any technological development that reduces revenue to “the news business” is a bad development. Why? Because for people in “the news business,” reduced revenue means that they have to economize. And since the “media insiders” are being squeezed, this is bad. Yeah, things are tough all over. Just ask Gunnery Sgt. Hartman.

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