Do Not Fear New Technology Joe Kernen

Hey Joe,

Over the past few days, you have taken a number of shots at the blogging community. You seem to have a fundamental misunderstanding of what this new media and blogging is all about. Allow me to briefly educate you.

This *all around you here* is merely a medium of communication. It allows a small firm, or even just one person — without a television studio or a huge printing facility — to communicate with many other people. It provides an alternative outlet from the traditional media model. The few-to-many model you are familiar with is being replaced with a many-to-many model.

This technology allows me sitting on the deck of a lodge on a lake in Maine — and still respond to your snarky comments on TV this morning. Not only will they be read by 100,000 people today, but it creates a permanent, Google searchable record for the future.

Now, I can understand why all of this might frighten you. The usual gatekeepers are not in control. Audiences are fragmenting, your viewers seeking out alternatives. The blogging community is a pure meritocracy. There is quality research, analysis and commentary being found and read by millions every day. Look at the people who publish in our Think Tank — these are professionals who (non-professional) investors ordinarily would not have access to. This is what new technology allows.

As more and more people come to rely on alternative sources of information and data analysis, their former MSM habits are changing.

Look, I understand that you in the traditional old school media world feel besieged. Ratings are down, advertising is suffering, viewers have moved on. But rather than fight the new medium, you should consider adapting, rising to the new challenge.

You seem to have a bone to pick with those firms and people who already have adapted this technology to their businesses. You misunderstand this the new media. Blogging is merely a form of communication, one that millions of people have embraced as publishers, and 100s of millions of readers have come to rely upon — some as a supplement to their mainstream media diet, others as a substitute.

Even has a number of blogs. You may wish to recognize that while you fight the new medium, your employer has seen its future — and wants in. You should learn to love it.

But consider this: Had your industry had done a better job informing the population, challenging conventional wisdom, and let’s call it “afflicting the comfortable,” us bloggers would not even exist. Nature abhors a vacuum, and since you guys in the MSM created one, we stepped in to fill the void. For that, you have our undying gratitude.

But rather than fearing new technologies, why not come to understand them? Learn a little. Expand your view. Increase your sources.

The future has arrived. Embrace it.

-Barry Ritholtz

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