Friday, December 10, 2004

Today's Action Alert

This is part of the new series of action alerts that some of us liberal bloggers are posting as a common effort. If you have the time and inclination, act on them!

In a December 8 article on about "some Internet blogs [that were] also being used as proxies for campaigns,"'s chief political writer David Paul Kuhn drew an unfounded comparison between, on the one hand, two South Dakota bloggers who, while purporting to run nonpartisan websites, also worked as paid advisers to John Thune's Senate campaign, and on the other, Duncan Black, who both operates his own website under the pseudonym Atrios and holds the position of senior fellow at the nonpartisan media monitoring organization Media Matters for America. The flaw in this comparison is clear on its face. In addition, it is based on a number of factual inaccuracies regarding Mr. Black's association with Media Matters.
Kuhn wrote that Mr. Black is the author of the "popular liberal blog Atrios [sic]," which he wrote under a pseudonym. "All the while," Kuhn wrote, "he was a senior fellow at a liberal media watchdog group, Media Matters for America."
There are a number of factual inaccuracies embedded in this short excerpt. First, Mr. Black has not been a fellow at Media Matters "all the while" he has operated his website. Mr. Black started his website -- called "Eschaton", not, as Kuhn wrote, "Atrios," which is the pen name under which he operates the site -- in April 2002. Media Matters, which was launched in May 2004, hired him as a fellow in June 2004.
Thune goes on to imply that Atrios has an "ethical problem." It's clear to see why they targeted Eschation rather than, say, Little Green Footballs. It's also another disgusting attempt at "balance" -- criticize the liberals even if you have to make something up. Write to:
Andrew J. Heyward
CBS News
524 West 57th Street
New York, NY 10019
And tell him that CBS owes Atrios an apology.