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Thursday, February 17

Evolution or Revolution?

We must be doing something right or they wouldn't be pissed off. I have known all along..... it was that last Wild West. Blog while you may.

Bloggers, Right And Left, Have Become Modern Vigilantes
February 17, 2005

Q: Prof. News, what lesson can be learned from the abrupt departure of CNN news chief Eason Jordan?

A: In the age of blogging, what you say or do can be used against you quickly and repeatedly until you surrender.

Bloggers - meaning those who maintain Web logs, or "blogs," on the Internet - hammered Jordan for what they were told he said about the taking of gunfire by journalists in Iraq. I'm sure he wishes he had chosen his words more carefully at an international forum in Davos, Switzerland, last month.

A blogger who was there posted an item quoting Jordan as saying the U.S. military targeted journalists and killed 12 of them. The posting was immediately picked up by conservative bloggers who detect a liberal bias at CNN and got wide distribution. What Jordan said, or was supposed to have said, was denounced as a slur against our forces. Later Jordan said what he meant was that American forces mistakenly shot at some journalists.

No one was able to verify exactly what Jordan had said because the forum was "off the record," and the organizers were refusing to release a tape. Which leads me to wonder: Why was a news professional participating in an off-the-record forum? Journalists should be fighting to put newsworthy comments on the record, not going along with keeping them from the public.

In any case, the online outrage grew to firestorm proportions, and Jordan resigned. He said he did not want CNN "unfairly tarnished by the controversy over conflicting accounts of my recent remarks regarding the alarming number of journalists killed in Iraq."

In fact, 54 journalists from various countries were killed in Iraq in 2003 and 2004, according to Ann Cooper, executive director of the Committee To Protect Journalists. At least nine of them died from American fire, she said.

Read the rest here.

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