Posted April 26, 2007 9:57 am by with 4 comments

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I just read a post at SEW where Frank Watson conducts a simple experiment to see how many results appear in mainstream media versus blogs for three topical search queries.

I chose three news items: Yahoo Panama, the Freedom of Choice Act, and the French elections. Doing a Google news search they had 1,062, 1,010 and 6,091 stories respectively. But using the blog search these numbers went through the roof. Panama had 34,023, FOCA had 55,836 and the French elections 65,858. There are caveats obviously. News items are dedupped (not totally but it impacts) while blogs mix news and comments so are all different. Readership of the blogs may not reach the numbers that grab news stories directly from various news sources.

That sparked my own question. What’s more important – getting accurate, fact-checked, proof-read news or fast, raw, unedited blog coverage?

With more and more blogs coming online, and standards of blogging increases, are we entering a world where blog coverage of a news item is “good enough?” Will print newspapers have to find a new role in news reporting – handing over breaking new to bloggers, while focusing on editorials, opinion pieces, and features?

So, what’s more important to you?


  • Accurate is more important to me, once news gets into the cycle (is ingested) there’s little chance to fully recover and give the truth, even with a follow-up story, apology, or errata.

  • Look at what “fast news” got us. War in IRAQ. I will wait for a long time if thats what’s needed to get accurate news.

  • Accuracy. Hands down.

  • rick gregory

    Accuracy. Especially since incorrect facts can be picked up and recirculated so fast and so easily now. Even if the original source corrects themselves, the ‘fact’ can gain credence simply by being said in many places.