Sunday, January 31, 2010

Glenn Greenwald Radio: Eric Boehlert -- Bloggers on the Bus: How the Internet Changed Politics and the Press

Eric Boehlert's new book about political blogs
Glenn Greenwald Radio (Salon)

Eric Boehlert has just released ... Bloggers on the Bus: How the Internet Changed Politics and the Press. As the title suggests, the book examines the impact which the blogosphere has had on both journalism and political activism... .

In order to dispel stereotypes and myths propagated about bloggers (mostly by establishment journalists eager to demonize what they perceive as their competitors), Boehlert focuses on 8-10 bloggers, and writes in detail about their background and what brought them to blogging. There is a chapter that focuses heavily on the fight over FISA and telecom immunity... . Today, Salon has published a partial excerpt from that chapter, and it thoroughly highlights how that fight was waged and what it reflects about the ability of bloggers and their readers to affect our political debates.

Boehlert's book is a very balanced and provocative examination of the role blogs now play, and he devotes an entire chapter -- perhaps the most interesting one -- to the acrimonious civil war that erupted during the Obama-Clinton primary fight. He also examines what role bloggers now play in light of Obama's victory. One of Boehlert's specialties, as a Senior Fellow at Media Matters and author of the equally excellent Lapdogs, is the profoundly corrupted establishment media, and the book does an excellent job of describing the dynamic between establishment journalists and blogs.

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