Blogging is sexist, says the pot
Wednesday, December 4th, 2002
I guffawed reading the recent NYTimes article analyzing blogdom’s apparent domination by men.
Among the culprits named: a) “the mainstream media, which has focused its attention on a predominantly male group of bloggers who write about terrorism and Iraq and have come to be known as the warbloggers,” b) Instapundit’s blogroll is “heavily weighted toward men,” c) all but one of the links on Scott Rosenberg’s blogroll is a man, and d) “female bloggers often have more of an inward focus, keeping personal diaries about their daily lives.”
Gee, that’s fun speculation. But the author ignores the (male) gorilla looking over her shoulder. While she admits that the apparent maleness of blogdom might be “a holdover from the world of print, where men continue to dominate the opinion pages,” she does not bother noting that 80% of the articles on the average front page of the New York Times are written by men and that 8 of 11 editors on the paper’s masthead are men.
In this context, is blogging’s skew (produced by the individual choices of swarms of men and women rather than one institution’s biases and/or policies) worth an article? I guess mentioning the Times’ own sex-skew would have made the article (or the Times) look silly.
Rebecca Blood, who was interviewed for the article, complains that “what I’ve learned about the press in the past few years is that each reporter has a story he or she wants to tell, and this process of interviewing people is largely an attempt to find others who will say what they already think is true. if you reflect back to them their pre-existing opinion, you’ll be quoted. If you do not, you won’t be.”
I recall Mickey Kaus’ comment at the recent Yale blogfest that an “editor at the NY Times keeps wanting me to write an article trashing blogger triumphalism.” I guess we can expect more of such “journalism” about blogs from the Times.
The hypocrisy of the Times’ riff on blogdom’s possible sexism provides an interesting side-bar to the same paper’s preachments against Augusta’s sexism… without itself boycotting coverage of the event.