The terrain of the information battlefield
If a blogger goes to Iraq largely at his own expense to cover a war he believes has been incompletely reported by the regular newspapers, this is the way he is characterized by the Washington Post:
The Post went on to say Roggio was credentialed by the American Enterprise Institute, an allegation that Roggio denies.
On the other hand, the Washington Post has largely missed this story. It turns out that Al Jazeera invited a hundred bloggers, all expenses paid, to a symposium in Qatar earlier this year to promote its stations. One person who wrote on the subject was Alvin Snyder.
At least one blogger disclosed the Qatar trip to their readers according to Snyder.
Professor Lynch is being forthright according to Kelly McBride, ethics group leader at the Poynter Institute, because "professionals" who earn their living by research and writing are expected to have a different set of standards from amateurs.
Caveat emptor. Let the reader beware.
posted by wretchard at 6:00 PM | 8 comments
A voice divided
Austin Bay quotes Timothy Garton Ash with respect to what America doesn't do in the field of information warfare.
The underlying reason why America is doing so poorly in the field of "information warfare" against the Jihad is that its traditional organs of articulation -- the academy, media, Hollywood -- are largely hostile to the War on Terror itself. It's conceivable that an Iranian might flee persecution only to be taught at a US university that he ought to embrace it by the many academic departments whose point of view is exactly that. In a fundamental sense, the War on Terror is twinned to the greatest single issue dividing the Left and Right, which is whether the United States, as a nation, is legitimate or whether, as some would maintain, it is Amerika: an abomination whose demise must be hastened by any means necessary.
posted by wretchard at 6:45 PM | 43 comments
March 26, 2006
The Washington Post & My Embed
The Washington Post's Ombudsman addresses the issue of my embed
Last December, Messrs Jonathan Finer and Doug Struck wrote and article titled “Bloggers, Money Now Weapons in Information War” (byline - U.S. Recruits Advocates to the Front, Pays Iraqi TV Stations for Coverage), which basically equated my embed in Iraq with a military information operation. I responded, and explained the numerous flaws in the Washington Post article, and in January the newspaper issued a correction for three of the basic factual errors.
Today, the Washington Post's Ombudsman, Deborah Howell, has addressed the issue while discussing the Washington Post's coverage of the War in Iraq. Ms. Howell correctly points points out that my embed (an issue of Public Affairs) was lumped in as an Information Operation. This is something Messrs Finer and Struck, or their layers upon layers of infallible editors, never even investigated.
To most of the media, my position on the war automatically makes my reporting and analysis of Iraq suspect, even though they did very little work in looking at exactly what I wrote. But Joe Galloway has been against the war in Iraq from the start and has been very vocal about it, and no one questions his motivations. Note how he is treated in this article, "a legendary military correspondent." Thomas E. Ricks, who is writing a book titled “Fiasco: The American Military Adventure in Iraq," is an objective journalist whose credentials should never be questioned.
If you are member of the club, there is no attempt to discern you position on the war; journalists are by default objective and unbiased. Bloggers such as myself, who actually follow the day by day operations and developments in Iraq, and perform accurate analysis based on these details the media cannot be bothered to track, are of course "pro-war," "activists" and such. What a sad state of affairs for our media.
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