Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Is the MSM Eating Up the Blogosphere?

The shortlists for the EI Commentariat Awards were announced this evening. I am shaking my head at the blogging shortlists...

Best Blogger

Shortlist: Melanie Phillips,
Nick Robinson, BBC
Paul Waugh, London Evening Standard

Best Blog Site

Shortlist: Coffee House, The Spectator
Comment is Free, The Guardian
Telegraph Blogs, Telegraph Media Group

Having won the award last year I have to say I am extremely disappointed that not a single independent blogger is shortlisted this year. More evidence that the mainstream media is eating up the blogosphere?

PS And someone please, please tell me how Marina Hyde is nominated as political commentator of the year alongside Danny Finkelstein and Matthew D'Ancona. What a joke.


Witterings from Witney said...

"Matthew d'Ancona. What a joke!

One of the few times Iain, that I can agree with you

Jimmy said...

Mad Mel? Really?

Tapestry said...

When did Rowan Atkinson last win a comedy award? Yet Mr Bean is known across the planet.

He's in buses in Kenya, supemarkets in the Philippines, literally everywhere, and I mean, he is played all day every day and all year to the exclusion of all others.

The truth is that no one who is any good ever wins an award. The pack are jealous of outstanding ability and individual achievement.

You could name countless geniuses not recognised from all walks of life, who either didn't care about face, or were not good at business, or who didn't spend time arse-licking the creeps who hand out the prizes.

Span Ows said...

"More evidence that the mainstream media is eating up the blogosphere?"

No, more evidence that they are moving the goalposts about what a weblog is or at least what they consider a blog is.

Iain, last year you won "Online Commentator (independent blogger)"...the MSM have pulled a fast one by changing the categories.

The category judges include Diane Abbott MP; Greg Hands MP, Parliamentary Private Secretary to the Chancellor of the Exchequer; Howell James CBE, Head of Corporate Affairs, Barclays; Tony Halmos, Director of Public Relations for City of London Corporation; Deborah
Mattinson from Britain Thinks; Stephen Quinn, Publisher, Vogue; Michael Prescott, Group
Director of Communications, BT; Sir John Hegarty, Worldwide Creative Director, Bartle Bogle
Hegarty; Luke Syson, Head of Research, National Gallery and newscaster Jon Snow.

I wonder what sort of list of blogs this lot read...

Nigel said...

>>...please tell me how Marina Hyde is nominated as political commentator of the year alongside Danny Finkelstein and Matthew D'Ancona...<<

I'd be happy to oblige - if I had any idea of who she is.

Matthew D'Ancona - "establishment stenographer of the year" ?

Shame about Danny disappearing behind the paywall.

Anonymous said...

But most bloggers are, well - amateurs.
Journalists write for a living and as such have contacts (and agendas), so as well as writing for their papers they can expose topics they can write about on line.

Should we be surprised they get nominated? In struggle to think of any independent blogger who as anything useful to say. We are all entitled to an opinion of course but that is not the same as raising an issue or ventilating it.

Dizzy is one who actually seems to spend a bit of time doing research.

Anonymous said...

On the other hand threads like this show just what a knowledgeable blogosphere can achieve.

bolotics said...

Totally agree with you Iain but wasn't this always going to happen once the msm started the move away from the printed word.

The trick is they still haven't managed to make it pay and that may well be their downfall.


Autonomous Mind said...

It's just media protectionism by a media centric organisation.

You might be styled as an independent blogger, but you're every bit as much a media luvvie as this year's nominees.

The MSM remains largely a cowed entity, serving its own interests. The blogosphere isn't being eaten up, it's just that in the UK it isn't as well developed as in the US.

Rich Johnston said...

Marina is far funnier that you, Iain.

Guido Fawkes said...

I think Marina is hilarious, but it seems that the judges don't read independent blogs.

Anonymous said...

Fortunately, you have a bit of power yourself, Iain, via Total Politics.

You need to find a way to redress the balance. I'm sure you are sufficiently imaginative to be able to devise a strategy.

Why not post an exploratory article, requesting ideas?

Unknown said...

What's your beef with Marina Hyde (except for her politics, obviously)? Try reading through her columns from the election campaign: I found them witty and insightful. It's always a bit unsettling when female columnists are simply dismissed as a joke.

Wrinkled Weasel said...

Ask Guido.

Of course it isn't. This poll is a joke.

ukipwebmaster said...

More evidence that the mainstream media is eating up the blogosphere?
mmmm................ Well you should now Iain you are part of the MSM.

This is what the MSM have always done - vote for it's own kind. These awards and lists are meaningless backslapping that you shouldn't take too seriously.

Stuart Winton said...

Perhaps by 'blog' EI means a medium for MSM journalists rather than a medium per se!

Steven_L said...

People who like commenting online do seem to gravitate where the most comments are, such as CIF, Telegraph blogs etc.

Independent bloggers can't compete with these resources unless they organise themselve into more comphrensive, multiple contributor, couple of dozen posts a day sites surely?

DeeDee99 said...

Since PoliticsHome went behind a paywall, I don't read a variety of Blogs as much as I used to.

I miss PoliticsHome far more than The Times - but I'm not paying to read either of them for 10 minutes or so a day. So I stick to the DT and one or two favourite bloggers (including Iain Dale). It's a shame, but there you are - if they put up paywalls, readership goes down.

Will Straw said...

Quite right, Iain.

Paul Waugh is a top class blogger who uses all the functionality of the medium (videos, pics, blockquotes, etc) but Mad Mel is a columnist who writes short pieces for coffee house, and Nick Robinson gives us good insights and occasional thoughts when he has time but nothing more regular than that.

As for the best blogs. Coffee House is the standard bearer of a good group blog and deserves its nomination. But CiF is not a blog, it's a place for (mainly lefty) breaking views and Telegraph blogs has become a rival offering (mainly righty) breaking views).

Very disappointing.

Janner said...

ei seems to be a self-licking lollipop

Anyhoo having seen the candidates for 'environment commentator' I think we can safely say that if they are anything they are not cutting edge, or aware of where the real arguments are being made and discussed

George Monbiot FFS?

Bishop Hill or Antony Watts have more traffic and have achieved far more with far less resources

Take a chill pill - not being on their list is A Good Thing

Helen said...

Been saying that for ages. In Britain the blogosphere has not managed to break free and establish itself before it got swallowed up by the MSM. In fact, I recall writing an essay on that subject for your volume last year or the year before.

The Grim Reaper said...

Iain asks whether this is "More evidence that the mainstream media is eating up the blogosphere?"

Certainly not. More like evidence that the people at the El Commentariat Awards wouldn't have a clue what a real blog was if it bit them on the arse.

However, there is increasing evidence that the media are terrified of the influence from blogs, so I'd say they are trying to neutralise by getting into this "sector" as much as they can. The difference being that they could never provide the sort of independent voices that blogging requires.

Corporal Jones said...

The nomination of Nick Robinson is ridiculous. He hardly ever blogs and, when he does, ignores comments and says little that he has not already said on air.

Scary Biscuits said...

Great bit of evidence based trolling from Span Ows.

Anonymous said...

I believe Span Ows has nailed it.

Michael Fowke said...

These awards mean nothing. The MSM is running scared and just trying to defend itself.