Emily Bell, the Guardian’s director of digital content, takes a look at political blogging and viral video in the media sections opinion column today under the heading “separating the bloggers from the tossers”.
Her conclusion is: “No doubt between now and the next election the increase in politicians blogging will be like lemmings falling off a cliff, but a word of advice if I may. Unless you have and inner blogger â€” don’t bother.”
She castigates David Cameron who never veers into the “realm of conversation”. His posts do not refer to external sources, point to material seen or read, or link to people he’s talked to. “It is a one way diatribe of not-quite policies,” she writes.
There are resonances in Bell’s piece, of the discussion on why newspapers blog. Howard Owens has joined this discussion in his Media Blog and suggests: “All reporters must learn to become good bloggers. If youâ€™re smart enough to be a good reporter, you should be smart enough to figure out how to become a good blogger.”
That argument could equally be applied to politicians but I am with Emily Bell: you need “the inner blogger”.