OLD MEDIA HACK ATTACKS BLOGOSPHERE, GETS PRAISE FROM OLD MEDIA: Janet Maslin offers a charitable review of Lee Siegel’s Against the Machine, but even she has to include this part:
The vindictiveness and disproportionate influence of the blogosphere is a particularly sore subject. Who is it that â€œrewrote history, made anonymous accusations, hired and elevated hacks and phonies, ruined reputations at will, and airbrushed suddenly unwanted associates out of documents and photographsâ€? Mr. Siegelâ€™s immediate answer is Stalin. But he alleges that the new power players of the blogosphere have appropriated similar powers.
Mr. Siegel himself became a great big blog-attack casualty when, in what he wishfully calls â€œmy rollicking misadventure in the online world,â€ he was caught pseudonymously praising himself on the Web site of The New Republic, where he had been a particularly savage and reckless blogger. One of the improbable virtues of â€œAgainst the Machineâ€ is that it presents a rigorously sane, fair and illuminating incarnation of its more often hotheaded author.
If all bloggers had the low standards evidenced by Lee Siegel — and, more recently, The New Republic — maybe he’d have a point. But some people just weren’t made to blog, and they seem particularly angry at the blogosphere. Meanwhile, I guess we should brace ourselves for an onslaught of Andrew Keen-style young fogies.