Four Amazing Years Later
First of all, can everyone please take a deep breath and read Yogi Brewer? The Milwaukee Brewers were just a bit overshadowed Sunday, but they have the best record in Major League Baseball right now and here’s an MLBlogger who just rose to the occasion. Even a video.
OK. I was working the 2003 World Series and remember the dramatic moment when Florida Marlins players came out of the dugout to join those in the standing ovation for Roger Clemens as he pitched what was thought by many to be his final Major League outing.
Everyone is having his and her say now that the Rocket, 44, has just announced his return to pinstripes. One thing that struck me is how much the world has changed since that night in Florida. Specifically, I am thinking about the power of the consumer and the massive roar of the blogging crowd.
There were blogs in 2002. But most people were still looking at them curiously and trying to figure out how to join in and actually have people read your words. There was no MLBlogs, as I pointed out on the MLBlogs.com homepage after the announcement. It is a key difference that so many baseball fans now can just log in and be the voice of the moment. I have read through all of the MLBlogs that I can find that deal with the Rocket news, and we have tried to showcase as many of them as possible. Many more probably will post after this posting by me. Just click the numbers, which mix Yankee blogs with Red Sox blogs and anyone else who covers the topic. It’s your place to react, and we added the link to MLBlogs from our main coverage of the Rocket on MLB.com.
(Another reason fans subscribe for their own MLBlog…there’s a gateway audience of many million who can find your links simply by browsing by team template or now looking through the Clemens bloggage.)
If you’ve blogged about Clemens and your link isn’t included there, no problem, just post a comment here and remember to include your URL.
How much has life changed since Clemens "retired" for the first time? Here is a passage from our friends at Wikipedia (which I never used before 2004):
In 2004, the role of blogs became increasingly mainstream, as political consultants, news services and candidates began using them as tools for outreach and opinion forming. Even politicians not actively campaigning, such as the UK’s Labour Party’s MP Tom Watson, began to blog to bond with constituents.
Minnesota Public Radio broadcast a program by Christopher Lydon and Matt Stoller called "The blogging of the President," which covered a transformation in politics that blogging seemed to presage. The Columbia Journalism Review began regular coverage of blogs and blogging. Anthologies of blog pieces reached print, and blogging personalities began appearing on radio and television. In the summer of 2004, both United States Democratic and Republican Parties’ conventions credentialed bloggers, and blogs became a standard part of the publicity arsenal. Mainstream television programs, such as Chris Matthews’ Hardball, formed their own blogs. Merriam-Webster’s Dictionary declared "blog" as the word of the year in 2004.
Blogs were among the driving forces behind the "Rathergate" scandal, to wit: (television journalist) Dan Rather presented documents (on the CBS show 60 Minutes) that conflicted with accepted accounts of President Bush’s military service record. Bloggers declared the documents to be forgeries and presented evidence and arguments in support of that view, and CBS apologized for what it said were inadequate reporting techniques (see Little Green Footballs). Many bloggers view this scandal as the advent of blogs’ acceptance by the mass media, both as a news source and opinion and as means of applying political pressure.
Some bloggers have moved over to other media. The following bloggers (and others) have appeared on radio and television: Duncan Black (known widely by his pseudonym, Atrios), Glenn Reynolds (Instapundit), Markos Moulitsas Zúniga (Daily Kos), Alex Steffen (Worldchanging) and Ana Marie Cox (Wonkette). In counter-point, Hugh Hewitt exemplifies a mass media personality who has moved in the other direction, adding to his reach in "old media" by being an influential blogger.
Some blogs were an important news source during the December 2004 Tsunami such as Medecins Sans Frontieres, which used SMS text messaging to report from affected areas in Sri Lanka and Southern India. Similarly, during Hurricane Katrina in August 2005 and the aftermath a few blogs which were located in New Orleans, including the Interdictor and Gulfsails were able to maintain power and an Internet connection and disseminate information that was not covered by the Main Stream Media.
In the United Kingdom, The Guardian newspaper launched a redesign in September 2005, which included a daily digest of blogs on page 2. Also in June 2006, BBC News launched a weblog for its editors, following other news companies.
In January 2005, Fortune magazine listed eight bloggers that business people "could not ignore": Peter Rojas, Xeni Jardin, Ben Trott, Mena Trott, Jonathan Schwartz, Jason Goldman, Robert Scoble, and Jason Calacanis.
In 2007, Tim O’Reilly proposed a Blogger’s Code of Conduct.
Just imagine how different the world of content will be four years from now. I’m pretty sure Clemens will be retired for good at that point. Probably.