Tag Archives: blogging

Bernie Runs, Buffalo Shrugs (& Other Things)

13 May

1. Former head of the FBI’s Buffalo office, Bernie Tolbert, has finally stopped teasing everyone and officially entered the race for Mayor of Buffalo, running as a Democrat.  This means he’ll be primarying incumbent Byron Brown in September, and that he will be defeated. Buffalo Rising has the text of Tolbert’s announcement speech, and it focuses on education and crime, but is the same sort of talk we’re used to – technocracy and incremental improvement of bureaucratic issues. It’s a nice speech, but not one that adds a vision for a future Buffalo to the standard-issue schools-and-crime talk. 

The issues are so stark, one would think we could move beyond pablum and get into something a bit different. 

While Mayor Brown has had two terms already to do something big, he’s had little to do with anything big that’s happened. However, there is one thing he is better at than any of his competitors – building and maintenance of a formidable political machine. With the Erie County Democratic Committee likely to endorse Brown in an effort to promote intraparty peace, Tolbert’s chances are only slightly – and theoretically – above nil. 

2. But one correspondent to Buffalo Rising has identified a novel way to shuttle people to and from the Outer Harbor. Despite high prevailing winds and six months’ worth of inclement weather, he has suggested a cable car system to transport people high above the Skyway corridor from CanalSide to the empty and polluted Outer Harbor. Instead of focusing on bringing to Buffalo a cablecar system that was so popular at Walt Disney World that it was removed 25 years ago, perhaps we could spend that money to clean up the contamination on the Outer Harbor property that precludes any sort of development from happening. People on Twitter had fun with the idea on Friday under the hashtag #BuffaloCableCar.

It also reminded Chris & me of the “Detroit Entrepreneurial Guy” meme (example 1, example 2) – especially this one. Just substitute “Buffalo”. 

3. About a week ago, the Buffalo News’ Mike Harrington dismissively refused to listen to a podcast that Trending Buffalo’s Brad Riter recorded with Artvoice’s Chris Smith, arguing that it wasn’t “real media”. He and I argued about what constitutes “real media” over the weekend, with Harrington insisting that Trending Buffalo isn’t “real media”, and I argued (a) that the internet is a real medium; and (b) Trending Buffalo’s legitimacy as real media is determined by people who consume its content.  If it has relevance and popularity, it’s “real media”. Harrington insisted that blogs are a “wild west” (and I pointed out the wild west was a “real place”), which is an old argument. In the end, query why it is that the Buffalo News has its journalists blog and Tweet with Buffalo News branding if social media and blogging don’t constitute “real media”. 

Journalists can blog, and bloggers can be journalists. Whether an outlet is “real media” is, in the end, wholly up to the person consuming the content. 

I’ll storify up the back-and-forth later this week. 

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Buffalo Blogging

3 Oct

It occurred to me this morning that there are no bloggers in town anymore to argue policy and politics with. There’s no WNY-based Republican posting anything reasonable or thought-provoking about politics, and blogging in Buffalo is almost completely dominated by sports or personal content. Everything has now migrated to Twitter and Facebook, as far as I can tell. 

It’s a shame, that. We need more voices, not fewer. 

Not a First

6 Feb

In an article in today’s Buffalo News, Maki Becker writes about how the Hassan trial has kept western New York riveted for the past couple of weeks.  She writes,

The entire back row of Franczyk’s courtroom is filled with reporters, about half of whom are quietly tapping away at laptops and smart phones to send real-time updates on blogs and Twitter feeds — a first for a Western New York courtroom.

Marc, Chris, and I have been liveblogging or live Tweeting from Common Council meetings, Erie County Legislature meetings (#ecleg) for some time.  We were live Tweeting stuff in Buffalo way before it was cool.

But the Hassan trial is not the first time a court proceeding in Western New York has been live-blogged.  I’m not claiming that this was the first, necessarily, but it clearly renders inaccurate the supposition that the Hassan trial was the first – I live-blogged the legal arguments before Judge Sedita on the Erie County Legislature downsizing suit four  months ago.

I generally don’t mind being treated like an amateur-hour pretender by professional journalists, but don’t say something is “a first” when it is, at best, a second. Accuracy and whatnot.