The limits of doing this for free

Erik Kain

Erik writes about video games at Forbes and politics at Mother Jones. He's the contributor of The League though he hasn't written much here lately. He can be found occasionally composing 140 character cultural analysis on Twitter.

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11 Responses

  1. gregiank says:

    Very good point. To many people just fall back on repeating their ideology over and over. Its fair enough to say your opinions but be open to learning and searching for data. And of course admitting we all don’t know everything is helpful.

    You’re doing fine.Report

  2. A phenomenon that bothers me is that when all of the now-pro bloggers were amateurs or semi-pro they were good about linking to each other and highligting litle-known blogs. Now they only link to other pro bloggers. In the meantime all of us in the amateur ranks link to them as well instead of generating more original content or linking to each other. I’ve tried to make a concious effort in the past year to avoid giving too much free PR to pro-bloggers. It’s not that I don’t read or enjoy them but if they don’t have time for us we shouldn’t be spending so much time with them.Report

  3. Bob says:

    Shouldn’t Klein and Wilkerson, of all people, have a sense of reputable information as it pertains to economics? Just throwing up your hands and saying, “I don’t know” seems weird. I understand the tenancy to latch onto points of view that support your position, god knows, I do.

    But Klein and Wilkerson should be able to separate out the junk. Aren’t they “A-list bloggers”?

    I suspect, that more often than not, some sort of absolute truth does not exist. Then one is left with the strong urge to grab the stuff we find comforting.

    The best thing I can say about their admissions – now we know.Report

    • Mike Farmer in reply to Bob says:

      It’s probably a reaction based on prior beliefs being disproven by reality. Economic theory is one thing, but then there’s the experience of the business owners who understand clearly why they aren’t hiring. Much of what is being debated regarding stimulus vs freeing up the market to operate on sound business/free market principles is understood best by the people doing business everyday, not blogging about economic theory.Report

      • Bob in reply to Mike Farmer says:

        @Mike Farmer, maybe, but they are paid, “doing business everyday,” to earn their keep. Seems they owe their employer an honest days work. And if they have learned the lesson you guess they have learned shouldn’t they say as much – We’re just dipshits and the suites know best.Report

        • Mike Farmer in reply to Bob says:

          I agree they should present a deeper understanding — I suspect they do have a deeper understanding, they just don’t like the findings, so they play the game of who-to-believe, as if they aren’t smart enough to know which analysis makes the most sense. Plus, Klein’s critique that conservatives cling to an analysis which confirms their bia doesn’t mean anything — the important thing is if the analysis is close to correct, or on the money, or off the mark. The truthfulness of an analysis doesn’t depend on the political beliefs of its adherents.Report

  4. Koz says:

    Obviously the pros have more resources. But the amateurs have an advantage in that they are more likely to care about the subject matter than the personalities.Report

    • Bob in reply to Koz says:

      @Koz, Jeez, I guess we are destined to cross swords today.

      What evidence can you point to that Klein or Wilkerson care less about X than you or I or any amateur?

      I just don’t see it that way. If anything they seem to be saying they care, a lot, and they are grading against repeating information that just endorses their point of view.Report

  5. Ian M. says:

    To quote one of my bosses today (a professor retiring within the year) “No on reads the papers.” He pointed out that no one can really read the papers that come out. And by that he means thoroughly examine it, look at the figures, consider the methodology and truly comprehend the meaning. What he can do is get out “the key findings”. This is why peer review is so vital and why blogging sucks on academics. Peer reviewed journals cost (a lot) of money to have subscriptions to and bloggers cannot access the data and look at it themselves. When you read a peer review journal you have the knowledge that several experts read it and agreed it was sturdy enough to go into the journal. This lead to many terrible blog posts as bloggers re-post newspaper pieces about scholarly articles they haven’t read. In the worst case scenario, you get something like a Hanna Rosin Slate piece about science.Report