Just What Is "Breitbarting"?

Well, for one thing, it is not journalism.When I wrote "The Pride and Reward of Falsification: Post-Objectivity as Post-Responsibility" for the recent book News with a View (edited by Burton St. John and Kirsten Johnson) centering on Andrew Breitbart and James O'Keefe, I wasn't thinking in terms of a specific, definable strategy, certainly not one … Continue reading Just What Is "Breitbarting"?

Breitbart and O’Keefe: The Legacy

Last week, News with a View, an anthology of essays edited by Burton St. John and Kristen Johnson appeared. In it is an essay of mine, "The Pride and Reward of Falsification: Post-Objectivity as Post-Responsibility," an examination of some of the "journalism" of Andrew Breitbart and James O'Keefe. Two weeks and a day before publication … Continue reading Breitbart and O’Keefe: The Legacy

Post-Investigative Journalism

Commenting on the story that James O'Keefe has targeted a couple of progressive think tanks for his pranks:Ryan Girdusky, a spokesman for Project Veritas, the 501(c)3 organization O'Keefe started, declined to confirm whether EPI was the subject of an ongoing investigation, arguing that it would undermine the remainder of the group's work. "Ongoing investigation"?  Oh, … Continue reading Post-Investigative Journalism

The "He Said/She Said" Dodge

Want to avoid controversy yet continue to style yourself as a journalist?  Use "he said/she said," the surefire way of removing yourself from the debate while retaining a sense of personal gravitas!  Yes, kids, "he said/she said" can save you the trouble of real reporting, for it ties perfectly into the here-today-and-gone-tomorrow news cycle.  All … Continue reading The "He Said/She Said" Dodge

Lies, Damned Lies, and Ourselves

The interlocking stories of Andrew Breitbart and James O'Keefe, right-wing agitators who came to prominence during the first years of Obama's presidency, show how a little expertise with the Web along with video editing can be used effectively when regard for truth is cast aside.  They also show how the intoxication of power (or the … Continue reading Lies, Damned Lies, and Ourselves

James O’Keefe: The Downside of Citizen Journalism

The thing about citizen journalism is not that one has to be impartial or "objective" to provide valuable news service to one's fellow humans, but that one is part of a community the story concerns. Unfortunately, there are people who have taken the concept and bent it to their own ends. These tend to be … Continue reading James O’Keefe: The Downside of Citizen Journalism