In response to Melanie’s post about last night’s CBS Atlanta Blogger’s Forum.

Like Catherine, I can also be snarky and critical with the best – hint: my blog posts on political stupidity. But that wasn’t my agenda last night. Plus, I thought it was rude of others to act so high and mighty when they were invited to a meeting. There was no need for that because Steve Schwaid seemed genuinely interested in trying to find a way to connect with Atlanta bloggers.

I wasn’t there to assess the fate of broadcast news. Not my interest. Or to be critical of his business plan. I was there to listen and to learn.

I’m not na√Øve to think that Mr. Schwaid is doing this for the total greater good of blending new media with old media. Yes, he might be doing this to gain brownie points, increase his audience size, and even, oh my god, I must say it, to someday increase his profit line.

Catherine nor I were not “flattered by the attention”. This snide schoolgirl remark did not convey the fact we were impressed by a mainstream media person standing in front of us saying he did not know how to engage bloggers but was willing or how the project would exactly work. Including, the fact that Steve Schwaid made a lot of concessions to the bloggers throughout the meeting. It was refreshing to hear someone say “hey I don’t have all the ideas but I’m willing to learn and become engaged”.

I think it’s disingenuous to insinuate that “Nita can be bribed with small electronic gadgetry.” That’s bullshit! When you get invited to the table, it doesn’t mean that you have to eat the craps off the table. As I explained that very evening, I think it can only help BfD if there were a greater audience reading our posts. The CBS’ aggregator may just do that – allow more of the general public to view our opinions on why Georgia should be a Blue State. I don’t blog for profit so I make zero skins off this deal. Hell, I only blog when there is a gap in my schedule and I have some downtime.

As I also mentioned last night, the aforementioned Flipcam that was in my purse was purchased by my nonprofit client. I don’t record political events with their purchased equipment. Call me crazy but I try not to blurry the lines between a paying nonprofit client and political work.

Let’s think about all the community activities that we attend, both within and outside our Democratic circles, that are never covered or even mentioned by the network news.

How many times have you seen the network news attend a Stonewall Democrats’ event? How many times have you seen the network news cover a Planned Parenthood phonebanking session? How cool would it have been to tape Howard Dean when he had his informal session with only bloggers? Do you think the network news are going to interview candidates in a special election?

So don’t give me any shit about how CBS’ idea is fatally flawed or that I have somehow sold out until 1. You can think outside of the box and see how to use it for our advantage and 2. Until it’s been tested and proven a failure. The problem with so many “new media” folks is that they automatically place on their “new media” tinfoil hat and look for conspiracies at every angle.

Do I know if this project will work? Nope. Am I willing to give it some time? Yup. Am I giving up my day job(s) for this? Nope. But I’m willing to engage CBS and see where this project goes.


6 Responses to My Response to “Been there, done that…”

  1. Mel says:


    I think all those things were accomplished. Looking around the other blogs, the reviews were generally very good. Mine was the only one that was less than flattering, only because I care much less about our traffic than I do about the industry as a whole. But it’s probably not fair to dump all that at your feet.

    I’m not sure where the idea of “darkside motives” came from, other than Bernita seems to have taken issue with a joke I attempted to make. No one is paying for content these days, so why should you?

    Otherwise, as I wrote, I thought the cameras were a “nice gesture”, as did others. But I’m pretty sure I’m the only one who had higher hopes for the “Summit”, only because I’d read good things about you.

    But seriously, thanks again.

  2. steve schwaid says:

    Ok, if I may post my thoughts about this.

    The goal of this summit was several fold:

    1. Understand something and learn something about the local blogger community.

    2. Come up with a way for users to easily find local blogs. As part of this we would promote the site on air, allow viewers to search for blogs of interest and then let the viewser leave our site and go to the blogger’s site.

    3. Darkside motives. Honestly none. I’m trying to get my hands and mind around the digital world, look for new content for our viewers/users.

    4. Paying for your content? Ok folks, I’ll make a deal with you when someone starts paying for the content on our site I’ll pay for the content on your site.

    5. The flip cameras. Shame on me. I thought it would be an interesting and creative idea and allow us to develop relationships with bloggers. If we run the video on our air and then send them to your blogs for more information what’s the downside? Sure, I get a few seconds of content and you get the page views.

    6. I loved it when one blogger asked how we would check the credibility of other bloggers. Huh?

    Not to be snarky, but come on folks. This isn’t the end of the world. I’m trying something new, or trying to try something new.

  3. griftdrift says:

    I was bowling. Free beer and bowling trumps free pizza and coke.

  4. Mel says:

    It’s not payola if you have to work for it. And I saw a name tag for you, but you must have bailed.

  5. griftdrift says:


    But nobody ever offers me any. :-(

  6. Mel says:

    And here I was just browsing small electronic gadgetry for your birthday. Damn.