Mr Bailey wishes publishers would abandon “comment forums at the end of articles on newspaper Web sites“, because those are “insidiously contributing to the devaluation of journalism, blurring the truth, confusing the issues and diminishing serious discourse beyond even talk radio’s worst examples“. Can’t Mr Bailey simply avoid reading comment forums, one wonders? Or has he been ordered to do so by the doctor? (if that’s the case, it’s time for a second opinion!)
How thin can the skin of journalists be, and how soft-bodied their stories if all it takes to “tear down” one of their articles is for “some agenda-driven bonehead” to publish a comment? And what should worry us most…allowing people to freely express and exchange their ideas, or the unremitting deluge of scaried-up, sexed-up, hyped-up invariably “breaking” news pieces that has been befalling upon us since the invention of news business and especially after the advent of 24/7 news?
All in all, what I am really, really sorry about is to see a person like Mr Bailey approach the internet by renouncing critical thinking, and believing instead that writing a note in a web site grants “an aura of legitimacy from the association with the host’s brand“. Yeah, right…with such an attitude, I wish good luck to Mr Bailey’s business.