Friday, August 03, 2007

Chicago: Blogging capital of the world? BlogHer last weekend -- Yearly Kos this weekend

According to Abdon M. Pallasch's story in this morning's Chicago Sun-Times Yearly Kos "is an outgrowth of the DailyKos weblog, which started just five years ago but has already become a potent force in Democratic politics." The Sun-Times story goes on to say that every one of the major Democratic presidential hopefuls will address the convention on Saturday; DNC Chair Howard Dean spoke to the group Thursday evening.

The coverage accorded this weekend's blogging convention contrasts with the more limited coverage given last weekend's BlogHer convention. There's nothing on the Sun-Times website about it. Steven Johnson, the Tribune's "Internet critic," did a column on the BlogHer conference that ran July 27. I missed it in the print edition.

But there was no missing today's story on page 3 of the Tribune about Yearly Kos. (Oddly, the story about a gathering of bloggers did not make the front page of the Tribune's Internet edition, although Pallasch's story was prominently linked on the front page of the Sun-Times web site. Steve Johnson does have a story online about Markos Moulitsas' Chicago-area roots -- as opposed to Kos' "netroots.")

What do you suppose accounts for the differences in coverage?

Yearly Kos is bigger -- 1,500 bloggers in attendance as opposed to about 800 for BlogHer (according to the links above). And, if there are many different agendas and goals for the BlogHer attendees, Yearly Kos is a completely focused political gathering. These are the true believers. These are the zealots that can, by concerted action and concentrated vitriol, deny (for example) the Democratic Senate nomination to a Joseph Lieberman of Connecticut. (He ran thereafter, as you'll recall, as an Independent and won reelection anyway.)

I don't think the Yearly Kos bloggers would reject the "true believer" or "zealot" labels, by the way; I presume they see themselves as leading or shaping public opinion... but I'm sure they do see themselves out front, pulling the masses leftward -- not as a largely self-contained community that feeds on and reinforces the biases and prejudices they all share. And, if their growing reach extends beyond influencing primaries (which have always been where true believers have the most pull) to general elections, they'll be right, won't they?

I express neither an opinion nor a prediction at this time. But, speaking as a Chicago taxpayer, I can say this to the Yearly Kos visitors: Welcome. Spend money.

I wonder what blogging group is booked here for next weekend? The right wing true believers? Organic gardeners? Roswell conspiracy theorists? If you know, be sure to leave word....

1 comment:

Empress Bee (of the high sea) said...

yeah, spend money! ha ha... good post curmy.

smiles, bee