Rubel Peppers Jeremy, King Sweetens Lance and Robertson Just Sours

It’s been almost two weeks since my last post, which in “blog time” is equivalent to being dead. Not that I try or care to keep up – Steve Rubel, for example, sometimes posts more items in day than I do in two months. I’m more like a Jay Rosen as far as my posting habits, albeit without the academic credentials, large audience or journalistic pedigree. Okay, so the only thing I have in common with Rosen is being a nice Jewish boy who writes, but it’s a start. At least I went to a real journalism school (just kidding, Jay, buddy!)

Because I’m “slower” than most, it takes a while for me to read and digest blog posts. So I need some clarification – when is a conversation in the Blogosphere “over?” Steve knocked Jeremy Pepper for trackbacking a current post on Micro Persuasion to a post Jeremy wrote months earlier on a similar topic. Steve says that’s not kosher, but I’m unclear.

If a post by one blogger from March is relevant to a post by another blogger in August, shouldn’t they be linked and considered part of an ongoing dialogue? Did Jeremy have to write something new to be relevant? Don’t blog conversations have long tails, too?

I advise clients that conversations online don’t end but endure. Am I wrong, or am I just misunderstanding the etiquette of the “trackback?”

By the way, I didn’t trackback this post to Steve just to be safe. I hope to meet Steve at the American Press Institute’s We Media conference in New York in October and want to stay on his good side.

Now for a couple other hot news items of the late summer:

  • Shortly after Bob Costas declined to host a Larry King Live show about the missing teenager in Aruba, Costas was back co-hosting with Larry for an exclusive interview with Lance Armstrong. Costas asked germane, serious questions about the recent doping allegations against the seven-time Tour de France champ. When it was Larry’s turn, he asked Lance when he was going to pop the question to girlfriend Sheryl Crow. Armstrong looked confused and Costas reacted as if King was that crazy uncle at the family reunion everyone tries to avoid.

I’m not saying what King does is supposed to resemble journalism, but when actual news is on the table you don’t start dropping softballs like manna from crazy old talk show host heaven. King could get an exclusive interview with Saddam Hussein and spend an hour talking about recipes for hummus.

  • Pat Robertson says that the United States should assassinate the President of Venezuela, then denies he said it, then admits he said it and apologizes for saying it, but then sticks by his belief that the President of Venezuela is a bad guy and, at the very least, should be grounded and have his Xbox taken away. Fox News tries to marginalize Robertson by calling him old and irrelevant, and then spends the rest of the week discussing the issue six ways to Sunday. Today, a guest on Fox with a heavy New Jersey accent suggested that, yes, perhaps sometimes foreign leaders should get “whacked."

So my question is this: Instead of spending billions of dollars looking for intelligent life on other planets, can we start looking for some intelligent life on this one?

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