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February 11, 2005

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More Gabbing on Googlezon

Masha Geller called me up for an article about EPIC. Here’s what she wrote.

Not to knock the article or anything — well, okay, I am knocking it, but only in the nicest possible way — but it demonstrates some flaws in the old gatekeeper model of journalism. If you were really interested in EPIC, this article would not be the place to learn about it. Instead, you’d go to Snarkmarket, or one of the dozens of other blogs that have deconstructed and critiqued the movie. Or jeez, you’d just e-mail me or Matt. I read Masha Geller’s article and I’m not even sure what I’m talking about.

Nothing but love, though! Masha really wanted to write this article and played phone tag with me for a long time to do it, and I appreciate it.

Posted February 11, 2005 at 8:46 | Comments (4) | Permasnark
File under: EPIC, Media Galaxy


Of course it wouldn't be an 'old gatekeeper' article without misspelling the name of a key person in the story:

"Sloane and Thompson’s first prediction"

It's a little weird, because it's for BusinessWeek Online. If it was for the print version, I'd say that's easy--it's not for people who are already really interested in Epic (yes, we would just email you), it's for people who have never heard of it because they only use the web to surf really safe sites, open their email, and buy books. The kind of person--probably older, probably not so geeky--who doesn't _get_ goofy forwards, and almost never opens them. But is that kind of person going to read BusinessWeek online? Maybe, maybe not.

Two moments that struck me as (mostly) benign condescension:

"...written and produced by two recent college graduates..." -- doesn't this have the "aw, shucks" tone of TV news, like you guys won an essay contest or something?

Also, two paragraphs begin nearly the same way:

"Far fetched? A bit, even according to authors Robin Sloan and Matt Thompson..." &

"Impossible? Probably, but worth thinking about..."

Of course, hardly anyone, you guys included, subscribe to EPIC as a literal prediction of the future -- as I understand it, it's a thought-experiment, one particularly geared towards exploring the contradictions of the emergence of a decentralized media, which is neither an unmediated good nor an unmediated bad, as some opinionmakers on either side would have it. And this is the dimension that seems to still be relatively underexplored in the discussions I've seen.

She misspelled your name in your e-mail address too, and she misspelled Poynter's! Why is it so hard to get the basics right?!

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