Opinion – Why the Observer's '50 most powerful blogs' feature proves print media knows nothing about new media

Katherine Hannaford Columns & Opinion, Internet, Websites 6 Comments


Katherine Hannaford writes…

Last week, when reading the upcoming features for the next issue of the Observer Magazine, I was worried to see they promised an article entitled ‘The world’s 50 most powerful blogs’. Old media reporting on new media? It could only mean trouble, and stir a generous helping of some angry-sachet into the big online pot.

When having my weekly Sunday morning lie-in in bed with a copy of that day’s Observer, I realised I overestimated the knowledge of the journalists writing for that paper, and indeed, the magazine. Sure, I can’t tar them all with the same brush, considering the Observer and its brother-newspaper, the Guardian, have internet-savvy journalists like Bobbie Johnson and Jemima Kiss snuggled under their wings, amongst others. But what I saw before my eyes on the morning of the 9th of March angered me greatly.

It appears I wasn’t the only blogger infuriated over the dubiously-named list of ‘powerful blogs’ (available online here). The 26-odd commenters who’ve shared their opinions on the article online all agree, as do thousands more across the world, that the list is possibly the worst, most confusing collection of so-called blogs ever put together. Collaborators Jessica Aldred, Amanda Astell, Rafael Behr, Lauren Cochrane, John Hind, Anna Pickard, Laura Potter, Alice Wignall and Eva Wiseman, you should hang up your Bloglines accounts for good. Although I’m guessing one of them, if not all of them, doesn’t even know what an RSS Feed is, according to one of the many mistakes they made in the summary about Engadget…

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