More than 500 blogs were accredited to cover the Democratic National Convention in Denver this week, according to a Globe and Mail report. And a whole slew of them have converged in the Google-sponsored “Big Tent” to furiously post about every last detail of the four day event.
The bloggers working out of the Big Tent are given not only great access to the delegates and the events, but the royal treatment from Google that includes free fruit smoothies and 10-minute massages.
And some say this creates an ethical dilemma for those covering the event. Globe reporter Siri Agrell wrote:
“It has raised questions about whether these Internet-based diarists and
opinion-makers are being used by the Democratic Party, their
independence undermined by politicians and corporate sponsors who are
wooing them into a stupor with smoothies and celebrities.”
The Toronto Star‘s Andrew Chung notes in one of his reports from Denver that that things have certainly changed for bloggers who were once considered “fringe-types blathering inconsequentially to anyone who would read.”
Chung says there are about 200 bloggers actually in attendance at the DNC compared with just four in Boston four years ago. However he notes that most of them publicly support Barack Obama. He adds:
“Some have even given money to the Obama campaign. Partisan support and the idea of blogger-as-journalist can sometimes clash.”
The Columbia Journalism Review heard there were about 15,000 reporters
in Denver covering the DNC and decided to figure out what exactly they are all doing. For example, the CJR
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