January 25, 2007

Your Turn: I Want My Yglesias TV (… Or Do I?)


Because I do have a category called “Blogging Focus,” and because The BAG — with its unique visual pathway into political commentary — does not always link enough to “the big boys,” I thought we might turn our attention — for a change of pace — to the media dynamics (and aesthetics) of videoblogging.

Not that the simple, “hey, where’s my tripod, garage (or, should I say cubicle?) report” doesn’t — on the surface, at least — seem to completely fit netroots brand communication, but, since the ‘spherically well-known and highly-respected blogger, Matthew Yglesias, has just begun complementing his eponymous blog with video reports, I’m interested in your analysis.

Not to turn this simply into a whimsical exercise about presentation, I’d like you to consider a couple questions regarding the nature (specifically, the primarily textual nature) of the blogosphere.  Here are some things I’m  wondering :

First, it seems like one thing for a blog to post TV or cableland video, or any “non-blog specific” material that illuminates the point, but what are the implications for the blog form when — as in this case — Yglesias’ comments, as video content, simply replaces the same product, in the same space, typically delivered like this?

Second, and here’s the big “niche/marketplace” question:  With the blogosphere growing up, and its members becoming more influential and better known, what distinguishes the “video-blogger” — as a talking head — from the cable TV talking heads (at the other end of the spectrum, I guess), and, more confusingly, all those print-reporters-turned-talking-heads that are starting to do all that video clip reportage (and analysis) on the on-line sites at nyt.com and washingtonpost.com?

If blog commentary goes (or even, just encompasses) the video route (and, given my subject matter, I’ve entertained the idea myself), exactly what do we gain?  But, more specifically, what do we risk, lose, or subject ourselves to?  If Matthew, for example, should decide to move beyond the textual realm, what continues to distinguishes him as a blogger, beyond the public access channel savoir faire?

(See also: Josh Marshall’s video-response to the SOTU)

(image: matthewyglesias.com)

Post By

Michael Shaw
See other posts by Michael here.

The Big Picture

Follow us on Instagram (@readingthepictures) and Twitter (@readingthepix), and


A curated collection of pieces related to our most-popular subject matter.


Comments Powered by Disqus