My Reply to John Harris's e-mail to Glenn Greenwald
Boy is this ever inside baseball (whatever the hell that means). I haven't read Greenwald's reply.
As far as I can tell, the main, indeed the only, argument in this e-mail is that the New York Times and The Washington Post do it as well so it is OK. This applies to sending stories to Drudge (IIRC only the Times does this although Harris is not clear on that point) and changing the texts of stories without flagging updates.
My reply is that maybe that's OK for printed newspapers, but Politico is a blog and blogs are, in some respects, held to higher standards. In particular, it is generally considered unacceptable for a blogger to change or update a post in any way without flagging the change (typically with the word update). Also, there is the google cache, which means that critics can identify unflagged changes and bloggers can be called to account to explain why they do not flag changes becuase they are "ordinary changes made to reflect new circumstances, as distinct from factual errors." Harris better hope that every change politico has ever made without "highlight"ing it corresponds to breaking news and not facts which the Politico postr could have known when writing the original story. I won't bother checking but someone will.
People don't keep all editions of a paper newspaper around for cross checking. Thus it is not possible to slip over things as it used to be. A web site (including www.washingtonpost.com and www.nytimes.com) can be policed more ruthlessly than a paper paper. Does Mr Harris remember the time that comments on www.washingtonpost.com were shut down (and some deleted forever even though they contained no dirty words but rather an embarassing promise to provide evidence for claims in the Post which evidence was not forthcoming). The internet does.
Harris honestly seems to think that he can keep the fact that Politico gets 65% of its traffic straight from Drudge secret. He clearly has not read the comments to the post which prompted his e-mail.
John Harris has a problem. He thinks that Washington Post standards are good enough for the blogosphere. He will learn to his regret that bloggers have standards and will not tolerate the sort of crap the Washington Post pulls correcting errors without admitting them and trying to hide information of interest to readers.
As someone said re swampland -- you're playing in the big leagues now. Get used to i.