The Internet in general and blogs in particular have a tough time with credibility when Rivals’ Auburn site edits incriminating video showing Auburn recruiting violations, or when blogs repeat incorrect material.

Everyone already knows how apparently doesn’t care about editorial integrity. When asked via email for information on editorial standards, a corporate ombudsman or any contact information on corporate editorial policies, Rivals hasn’t responded. Maybe my email went into the junk folder, or maybe Rivals just doesn’t care.

Apparently in the world of Rivals, standards don’t matter. Maintaining the cash cow of access by covering up recruiting violations is more important. This is one reason we will all miss newspapers. For all its problems and bias, at least the New York Times has standards, and tries to live by those standards.

As for blogs, one minor footnote in the Alabama textbook scandal begins in the honest mistake of one of the SEC’s best bloggers, Georgia’s Senator Blutarsky. The good Senator said Alabama’s probation ended Mike Slive’s dream of getting the entire conference off probation. Unfortunately, Arkansas’s track program had already prevented the conference from meeting Slive’s ambitious goal of getting everyone off probation through cleaning up compliance.

It was an honest mistake, and let’s be serious, who really would remember a track team’s probation? (The only reason I remembered it was Slive pointed it out in his SEC Media Days 2008 address.)

However, the honest mistake was gleefully repeated by Joe Cribbs’ Car Wash. I’m sure you will be shocked to know that site is an Auburn blog.

From there, the incorrect information was then repeated on AOL’s Fanhouse by Brian Grummell.

Also as a note, Blutarsky quickly edited his post when provided the information about the Razorback track program. Unfortunately, the honest mistake was repeated by others who were too lazy to fact check; they simply repeated information found on the Internet. Always a recipe for disaster.

And this is what is wrong with the Internet, lazy people with an agenda.

The Internet’s strength is the highly collaborative way readers can serve as an editorial board. Everyone makes errors, and blog readership is often some of the most informed Subject Matter Experts. This can be a very strong editorial board, and works to keep all of us honest through the regular way bloggers are challenged.

However, the Internet exacerbates that old proverb made popular by Charles Spurgeon, “a lie will go round the world while truth is pulling its boots on.” And in this case, the error was introduced into public discourse through an honest mistake on a trivial matter. Imagine how much more error gets magnified on major matters!

The Internet provides Alabama’s enemies (like those Auburn blogs) an opportunity to repeat untruths and smears without any semblance of editorial standards (how many of those Auburn blogs linked a federal raid on a Gadsden car dealership with Alabama’s NCAA troubles?). Until someone sues and sets a real precedent, the Internet will be infested with persons spreading falsehoods (like all those Gadsden rumors) without any fear or sense of honor.

9 thoughts on “Why the Internet sucks & always will”

  1. Good Read! I concur but as usual do have an opinion. The equipment it takes to run the internet is what get paid to take care. I think if you take the internet for anything more than entertainment your setting yourself up for disaster. Ya know like the personals, the buying, and the selling, and the NEWS. You have to find the truth sometimes on the internet and sometimes its hard to find. But if your careful and look you can use the internet in a lifestyle changing manner.
    As I said GR!


  2. Good point. Maybe if I viewed the Internet as only entertainment and sometimes infotainment then it wouldn’t be so bad. 🙂

  3. Rivals is a joke. They havent honostly evaluated a player in a long time. A Bama commit automaticly gets a star.

  4. I dont think their product is worthy to pay for myself.. I have always said if you can charge for it, that product (star) can be influenced and possibly purchased.

  5. Is this the same type site? Your critizing yourself in a lot of ways…. You could place your name in the article… that is why the internet is bad… BUT the biggest reason is that like Cable news, it plays to ITS audience, this one plays to Alabama fans… It works and it makes money… But don’t be a hypocrite..

  6. Michael in Portugal, speaking of Spurgeon, being on that side of the pond, will you get a chance to visit Amsterdam in July for the 400th anniversary of the first Baptist congregation?

Comments are closed.