Jerome and Kos- Where Are The Disclaimers?
by Andrew D, Tue Jan 18, 2005 at 01:31:21 PM EST
Anyone who has been to MyDD or Daily Kos over the last couple of weeks have noticed that in their coverage of the DNC Chair race a couple of things stand out: a pretty intense support (even if left unstated) for Howard Dean and a pretty intense opposition to Martin Frost (stated loud and clear). This is their right, and though I disagree with them it doesn't make me think any less of them as bloggers. What does make me worry is their lack of disclosure on a couple of points.
First, that both of them are business partners in a consulting firm that counted Howard Dean as one of their clients, at least in the past. Once you've had financial ties to someone, you can't very well call yourself a journalist if you don't tag that onto every statement about the person- particularly when your statements appear contrived to make the person look good.
Secondly, that after Kos made some very foolish and hurtful remarks about private military contractors in Iraq (a position my Dad now holds- training Iraqi police commandos in Baghdad for DynCorp) Martin Frost withdrew his advertisements from Daily Kos. Once again, the guy essentially took money out of Kos' pocket and Kos never mentions this potential source of bias when he is reporting on the DNC Chair race.
This isn't meant to bash them or crib a page from the right wing talking points, but I think they should either give full disclosure or stop writing on this topic. As their coverage has been pretty good (if, as noted, a bit slanted towards one candidate) I would hope that they wouldn't give up reporting on the subject. But it is important that anyone who casually saunters onto their sites knows that this isn't just a couple of earnest progressives speaking their mind- they are two businessmen who are commenting upon former clients and unfriendly business associates.
If we ever want blogs to be taken seriously we have to live up to very high standards. When I talk about party matters I note (as I will note here) that I am an employee of the Texas Democratic Party and that nothing I say is meant to be representative of the views of the party, its staff, its chairmen, candidates, office holders, executive committee or contractors. Kos and Jerome should do the same, for the good of blogging.
I hope I didn't piss anyone off, but it needed to be said.
Tags: (all tags)