Journalist Blogger

Wednesday, December 28, 2005

Blogs as source documents

The Greensboro News-Record in North Carolina is one of the few papers in the nation that really understands blogging. The paper has more than a dozen staff written blogs, including my pal and fellow eduction writer/blogger Bruce Buchanan.

I saw on the Romenesko blog that the News-Record was getting some heat for reporting details from personal blogs in the sensational case of a soldier who was killed upon a return from Iraq in a conspiracy involving his wife, her young boyfriend and another man.

I'm not surprised that a smart paper like the News-Record thought to look for blogs and it was an amazing break for them that nearly everyone involved in this case had one. It's interesting that some readers were uncomfortable with the newspaper using these "private thoughts" as a source for reporting.

There is no doubt for me that the paper did the right thing. The blogs shed a lot of light on what was going on there. Nobody would complain if one of these people had spilled their guts in an interview to a News-Record reporter. Well in a way, each of them instead gave an intimate interview to the whole world through their blogs.

Kudos to the News-Record for their good work.

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