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Paul Bradshaw

I take your point, but as a British journalist and blogger I think the wider ramifications for bloggers who do check the facts, and do have a genuine case of publishing under public interest, are important enough that bloggers should be defined as journalists as a 'safe option'.

As far as balance of power goes, the blogger/journalist has little enough muscle against the corporations as it is.

PS: I've linked to your post at my blog (http://ojournalism.blogspot.com/) at this posting (http://ojournalism.blogspot.com/2005/03/protecting-your-sources-it-may-no.html#comments)

David Garfinkel

Bravo, Paul!

Now you get to the real crux of the issue. I believe when a blogger takes the level of responsibility at an individual, personal level(that is often institutionalized and proceduralized in rules and checks & balances at a newspaper, TV news operation, etc.) ...

... then, that blogger should be accorded the same rights and protections as any employee of an established news organization.

And there are bloggers who do that. I would suspect you are one of them. It's a scary world out there without corporate money and legal protection, and so at least, yes, standards should be set to protect bloggers truly operating like journalists.

Of course my point is most of the bloggers have no clue. They equate journalistic privileges with freedom of expression with no responsibilities other than truthfully reporting what one person may have told them.

That's not good enough.

After all, if you want to play games with this, let's say you have a political point you want to make. You can get a friend to go inside a government building, say, the State Department in Washington, and put that person near a security guard.

Have that person tell you anything you want.

Then, in your blog, say, "a well-placed source close to high-security operations at the State Department said... "

Ludicrous, sure. But you don't think stranger things have happened?

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