New Media Panel: Back To The Future

Jillian Bandes

2/18/2010 2:12:55 PM - Jillian Bandes
A quartet of new media mavens tackled issues of online activism and conservative outreach at a mid-day CPAC panel, moderated by the Heritage Foundation's Rob Bluey, and featuring none other than Townhall's Jonathan Garthwaite.

"We're no longer sending our elected officials off to Washington, DC with no accountability, just to go squishy," said Garthwaite, speaking about new media reporting. "There's a level of accountability that we've never had before."

Garthwaite said that social media was a key to the tea parties; without Twitter and Facebook, organizing would be a lot harder.

Erick Erickson of RedState, Mark Tapscott of the Washington Examiner, and Tucker Carlson of The Daily Caller were also on the panel. "The wheels are coming off" in Washington, D.C., said Erickson, in terms of bloggers and media types being able to make a dent in D.C. machinery. And the "unwashed masses" of unofficial journalists are taking the wheels off the mainstream media establishment, said Carlson.
I'll never forget, despite my many attempts to forget, the day after Barack Obama was elected, and the conversation in the newsroom [at MSNBC] proceeded as follows: 'isn't it great that our new president is Barack Obana, instead of John McCain, and doesn't that reflect wonderfully on America.'
That's fundamentally unfair, he said, and the only way to combat it is to create your own news outlets, as he has done with the Daily Caller, and to make those outlets "interesting.
If its not interesting, people won't read it, and then you'll go out of business, unless you're taking some kind of government subsidy.

Tapscott reiterated a longstanding advice to younger journos

"If you want to be a journalist, all you have to do is go up to politicians, and ask them questions they don't want to answer," he said.