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Wednesday, February 15, 2006

Scott Johnson and Eric Black at Forum on Blogging and the Media

Doug Bass at MOBANGE live blogged the event. Doug Bass did an excellent job of what I consider reporting the event. He took good notes, and gave the facts of the case rather than his opinion.

King Banaian who moderated the event has his take.

Black's last ten minutes were spent, however, in a tawdry descent into Bush hatemongering. I saw Scott taking notes and I fully expect him to have something more to say. But Black's repeated use of "confirmation bias" was little more than calling the blogosphere an echo chamber and calling bloggers hypocrites. I thought it spoiled the rest of his lecture, and it unfortunately invited more of the questions to be about press coverage of Bush than about blogs and journalism, which was supposed to be the point.

Black's last ten minutes talked about the questions about Bush's military record. Calling any criticism of Bush "hatemongering" gets old.

I think the questions would have been about blogs and journalism if Scott Johnson had talked about blogs and journalism in his talk - rather than re-telling the Rathergate story.

Confirmation bias is a legitimate thing to be concerned about. In clinical trials, they call something similar the placebo effect - and that's why when you conduct a trial, you want to compare a placebo group with a treatment group.

I was very interested to hear that Ward Connerly might be a future speaker at one of these events. I would be very interested in hearing Ward Connerly speak.