Saturday, March 20, 2010

Blogging, Sexuality, and Journalism

Globe and Mail columnist Margaret Wente recently published an article identifying blogging as a "guy's thing." The negative backlash was such that it inspired the Globe to host a chatroom debate between Wente and readers. Follow the links to read the article and an archive of the chat.

I can't begin to list all the issues I have with Wente's basic argument and rhetoric. As the chatroom quickly points out she's quite simply wrong and failed to sufficiently research her topic; either that or she deliberately chose to ignore examples that didn't adhere to her limited definition of femininity. That's really my core problem here: Wente still couches her argument in such a restrictive binary as to identify entire activities as definitively gender oriented. It's difficult to give her piece even a fair consideration when she espouses such archaic paradigms. That doesn't even touch upon the basic irony of an article expressing the opinion that men blog more predominantly because they have a stronger desire to express their opinions.

The chatroom is way too easy on Wente, much like her editor. The tragedy of modern journalism, in its death throes, is that voices like this come with the intrinsic authority of publication. I can't think of a better nail in the practice's coffin than obsoleteness to the point of irrelevancy.

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