5/10/2006

Bloggers In The Mainstream Education News -- Finally

With three examples in just the last week, it seems like mainstream education editors and reporters may finally be getting more comfortable crediting, covering, and citing websites and bloggers for their contributions -- two or three years after their colleagues on the politics and media beats.

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The examples below illustrate that, for reporters and editors, maybe it's time to think about crediting and including blogs in your reporting rather than ignoring them (or, even worse, mooching off them for tips & story ideas you know who you are). Blogs sometimes break news, push ideas forward, and provide commentary as good as any other expert or pundit you would otherwise call. Go on, try it.

For bloggers, it may be worth noting that all three of these examples come when the blogsites provide otherwise-unobtainable information or breaking news. Brilliant commentary probably ain't going to get you there unless you're also an academic or part of an organization or advocacy group. The only exceptions I can think of include Jay Mathews and Greg Toppo, who have included me or my site once in a while. Are there others?

Now on to the examples:

The first and perhaps most notable example comes from this week's edition of New York Magazine, which names InsideSchools' Clara Hemphill as one of the most influential people in the city on education issues. "When Hemphill couldn’t find the information she needed to choose a public school for her young son, she set about finding it for herself, then sharing it with the rest of New York." Now ain't that something.

The second instance is about the edusphere's own version of the Smoking Gun, Peyton Walcott, who was just written up in the Dallas Morning News (Web watchdog keeps eye on school spenders). "Peyton Wolcott is either a lone voice crying in the wilderness or the vanguard of a revolution sweeping through school districts across America." (via Jimmy K)

The third and most obvious example can be found in Bess Keller's piece in this week's Education Week, which credits Andy Rotherham's Eduwonk for poking the NBPTS into releasing at least part of the results of its study. "The results of the study came to light last week after Andrew Rotherham...used a posting on his Eduwonk blog to note that the privately organized national board had apparently been "sitting on" the results because they were not favorable."

2 Comments:

Blogger Ed Researcher said...

Do bloggers really want the corporate media to start treating us like colleagues? Seems like a mixed blessing.

I'd be content just knowing that they feel some pressure from bloggers to not f--- up because the world is watching.

5:54 PM  
Blogger Alexander Russo said...

colleagues? i didn't mean to suggest that. what i did say is that so far the media has ignored education blogs, at least publicly, either because the blogs weren't good enough or because of the taboo in some newsrooms against dealing with them. and how do you know that the media feels "some pressure from bloggers not to f-- up" if they don't ever cite or quote from the education blogs?

6:25 PM  

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