Friday, September 23, 2005

California blogging: the professionals

Is this the future of blogging? The following sites are run by people paid to blog.

The new kid on the block is the excellent Alliance for a Better California's blog, now anchored by Julia Rosen, who is a dkos member. She double posts at dkos under the Alliance label.

Stop Arnold weblog is by Shrum Preston working for the CNA (CA Nurses Association). Shrum posts at dkos under the CNA label.

These two are the sites almost following blog format, with comments but without trackbacks and without linkage.

The rest use blog formatting, still very valuable sites even without the interconnectivity found on regular blogs.

One is the more process oriented less partisan Capital Notes, by KQED journalist John Myers, who seems to literally live in the state capitol. Now, would you call his site a blog? I dunno but I like his work, and he often is the first to get the news out.

Adding to the information overload, I try to check on a daily basis the news aggregator, Rough and Tumble, since it covers California articles in the major media newspapers. Unfortunately, it doesn't carry the tiny local papers as much as I'd like.

Around the Capitol snarkily spins major media articles and events in blog format minus comments or trackback. Since it has a feature to track a bunch of mostly conservative CA blogs, it kinda makes me wonder about the political leanings of this site.

One very distinctive feature of all these sites is the lack of linkage to the vast network of blogs written by us, the nonpaid progressive blogging crew I count on for opinion and support. I suppose when an organization supports the site and pays people to blog, you gotta be careful about the links.

I think it's important to point out the paid/unpaid distinction to those new to blog reading as we see paid blogging pundits grow in influence.

It seems to me the conservative blog world deliberately blurs the distinction between paid and unpaid bloggers. With that package, the paid bloggers generally embrace their unpaid echo chamber blogs by providing linkage and support. The many different carnivals, usually a conservative blogworld exercise but not always, is one example. Blogrolls of conservative sites tend to be hugely interconnected.

I wonder if structural differences like this may reflect a central organizing agenda or just the pack nature of the conservative movement. Just a few thoughts as I veer way off-topic so I'll just stop.