“News paper” bites “blog”
Sunday, February 13th, 2005
Great blogger meeting yesterday at UNC. Organizers expected 20 or 30 and 120 showed up. Moderators did a superlative job of keeping the Socratic focus on the participants rather than themselves.
The issue of credibility kept coming up. Are newspapers more credible than bloggers. I find it remarkable that anyone thinks any soulless, artificial, born-and-bred-for-profit corporate fiction is more credible than… a human being.
Speaking of credibility, I noticed the New York Times (a news paper) reverted yesterday to writing about “web logs” in explaining the discrediting and resignation of CNN news executive Eason Jordan.
Why does the Times persist in using “web log” an unrecognizable neologism for a phenomena that is commonly refered to everywhere as “blog.” NYT usage varies, but seems to be swinging against popular opinion. Does the NYT really have no style guide?
Score to date in the NYT (since 1996):
Blog: 249 articles.
Weblog: 75 articles.
Web log: 147 articles.
“Internet web log”: 1 article last summer.
Hey, you folks running the style sheet at the NYT! Here’s what everyone else is doing, at least according to Google, one of your journalists’ favorite sources for anecdotal pop vox ledes:
“Blog” appears 176 million times.
“Weblog” appears 44 million times.
“Web log,” your obscure neologism, appears only 4 million times.
And “internet web log” appears 1280 times.
Stick with an uncommon usage and people will be tempted accuse you of willfully seeking to remake reality rather than just reporting it. Oh, wait, they already are accusing you of that… anyway, over to you Dan Okrent.