This paper asserts that the role of blogs cannot be adequately understood without examining the established media context in which they appear. Blogs operate along side, in conjunction with, and in opposition to established vehicles for political information, which creates tension among journalists seeking to preserve their authority. As a site to observe the blog-traditional journalism relationship, this article examines the reaction by journalists and others to blogs’ role in US Election Day 2004 coverage. Much of the attention by journalists focuses on assessing the well-publicized decision by some blogs to release incomplete exit polls erroneously predicting a victory for Democratic candidate John Kerry. This discourse works to make sense of the status and credibility of blogs while simultaneously allowing journalists to negotiate their role as authoritative providers of political news. Ultimately, the discourse underlines the dynamism of news in a contemporary media environment marked by new forms of complexity and competitiveness.
- Journalistic authority
- Us election coverage