Friday, September 4, 2009

I've Decided to Steer Clear From the Latest Blogging vs. Media Controversy Because...

I've already talked about it before!!!

Let me just say one thing about this whole mess though. I don't really know who started it. I don't really care. The fact is once again, the "bigger voices" in the Hobby Blogging Community are up in arms over what they feel is the latest salvo in the "us vs. them" saga (them being the number one source in the Hobby). And it sickens me. Not because of the events leading up to this, but because this isn't the first time this has happened, and trust me, it won't be the last.

To top it all off, (first of all, welcome back Harner. I've added your site back onto the Sports Card Blogroll), the return of Cardboard Mania and one of his latest posts has now brought to mind the question of whether or not the blogs can be considered "real media." Other than the backpeddling and explanation, I found his original post to be very hard-hitting and in way, I agreed with some of what he wrote (SOME OF IT).

While none of the independent hobby bloggers, whether it's me or one of those other guys, will ever have the influence that the "established media" has in this Hobby, it doesn't mean that we can't break through and make people think. Blogging is a way for us to comment about what we care about, throwing our voices into the mix, and letting everyone know what we think about the "topic of the day." When it comes to reporting, whether it's Hobby Happenings or local news, to me it's not a matter of who reported the story first, (back to the us vs. them), it's a matter of who puts out the most detail when the story comes out, and who can make it look good. We (the bloggers) can all claim to have all our facts straight before hitting the "publish post" button, but in the end, most people will rely on the information passed on by "established media." Why? Because they have the connections, they have the sources, they can take the time to get everything together, and they don't look they're jumping the gun on a story. On the other hand, even if we had those same connections, same sources, and were given the same amount of time to get our facts straight, it would still look like we've put the cart in front of the proverbial horse.

And there is really nothing wrong with that. As I said before, "They are the established media. They've reported on it longer, they've been immersed in it longer, and heck, they promote the Hobby (despite opinions claiming otherwise) like nobody else can. And unless one of these days, somebody decides to bring the best Hobby Blog writers together and create a "printed" magazine with the articles we write, there is truly no comparison with who the Hobby consumer will trust."

So what am I saying here...that the bloggers should pack it in, and leave well enough alone? Of course not. There is enough room in the pool for everybody to continue on with what they write about. I'm saying that there has to be a balance so that we can meet the same goals when we write: promote the hobby. We should be more focused on being a complement to the news that has been reported, not be a hindrance or become the news ourselves. Because whether we are showing off our collections, or commenting on the topic du jour, we are all doing our fair share of passing along information that may not have previously been seen anywhere.

I once asked in a previous post, "Are we the new media? Will we take down the establishment?" and answered those questions with "Perhaps," and, "That remains to be seen. If that ever happens, at least we're here to pick up the slack." I think I can say with confidence that we the bloggers are the new media. While it still remains to be seen if we can take down the establishment (we have a long way to go if that was ever the goal), based on the number of blogs on the big blogroll, our numbers have increased, and we have done more than "picked up the slack." But more importantly, our voices will be heard more frequently as we move along on this crazy journey called the Hobby.

I'm going back to make some more mock ups for the 2011 Topps Archives Project. That'll keep me busy until this last embers of this latest controversy dies down.


JayBee Anama


Andrew Harner said...

Honestly, it's a question that is going to be debated for years and years with a ton of people on one side and a ton of people on the other side.

And at the end of the day, I only agree with some of what I have said too.

I am glad to be back though. I wish I could come back with full force, but I just don't see that ever happening again, considering how involved a job at a newspaper is.

I got away from reading others and forgot just how good this blog is.

Anonymous said...

Unfortunately, those card bloggers banging the conspiracy drum are often doing it to get attention for themselves. (Ever ask the question of "then what?" if they actually got what they want? Are we even sure what that is at this point?)

Ever notice how bloggers who get free boxes NEVER, EVER get "loaded" ones?

And yet seemingly every Beckett box is?

Or how about how Beckett reportedly pressured Upper Deck into cutting off boxes to a blogger? (I've heard it's complete fiction -- or someone lied to them.)

Meanwhile, in the last couple days one of said bloggers is on Twitter bitching to an Upper Deck employee how Beckett got boxes... and employee said he expressed his opinion to management.

Is that not the same thing?

There's a lot of talk about "ethics" among the card bloggers as well as "reporting" but it's pretty apparent that the ones who talk about it the most aren't exactly in touch with the terms.

The bullying of Harner over his opinion just reinforces that. If they don't agree with you, you're going to be castrated of your image.

Meanwhile, many just take what's written and accept it as truth. Who says they're even telling the truth?

Think for yourselves, people. And don't put other blogs on pedestals that they really don't have.