I think that Barlow outlined this book perfectly. He carefully placed the historical references to blogs in the beginning chapters to not only show the background of blogs, but show how main stream media came to be. Barlow distinctly makes effort to focus his attention on each historical icon that had a hand in the creation of blogs today, but behind the scenes he includes hints as to why main stream media is the way it is today. All the chapters leading up to chapter 10 and so on emphasize the truth about mainstream media. Not only does main stream media fail the public during horrible events such as 9/11, but they fail on a daily basis to tell the public the truth. I absolutely loved how Barlow included how to become an active researcher in chapters 14 and 15. One of the most valuable lessons I think everyone should learn from this book is that “Only with he appearance of blogs has this changed and have “average” citizens once more become a forceful part of public debate…” (p. 177). It started with the people creating the concept of coffeehouses and the introduction of the public sphere and the story still goes on with people fighting for their right to voice their opinion. Political interference and commercialization of media continues to haunt the people of the U.S. for decades, but with the rise of blogs at our fingertips the people will always have a voice.
In my first blog post about Barlow, the main topic I focused upon was the notion of good journalism. Barlow emphasized how many people assume the media is always looking out for the people, but who is looking after the journalists when they turn down the wrong path? He delves into examples of media not sharing important events to the public. Another important aspect I mentioned in my first post was the coffeehouses in the 1700’s. They were local coffeehouses where people would share their opinions about political matters and discuss the news going on in that town. Political powers and authorities of Britain were suspicious of these houses since people talking and sharing ideas could lead to a political uprise. Blog Post #1
In my second blog post, I discussed the most influencing figure in blog history, Thomas Paine. He created the notion of “public sphere” which was a time, before politicians had control of every media outlet, that people who share their views and the public would be swayed in their own political preferences based on real information. Blog Post #2
For my third post, the overall topic was about “partisan press” during the 1800’s which was political party run newspaper. Barlow emphasizes the election of Jefferson during this time because it directly relates to the 2000 election of Gore vs. Bush and the participation of blogs as “partisan press.” Blog Post #3 #ActWrtMedia17