Thinking Out Loud by Way of Indirect Warning
This aspect of the article to which Don links in the previous post particularly caught my eye:
Ban anyone, other than a “recognized employee of a news organization,” from videotaping or taking photographs of House sessions and House committee meetings “without the express permissions of the speaker.”
I’m aware of the tendency of the blogosphere to inflate its importance. Nonetheless, although I’m sure it’s incidental, this proposed rule almost sounds like an anti-blogger policy. The House simply can’t have people hanging around with their digital video cameras and potentially offering streaming video to the entire world through the Internet when something interesting happens, now can it?
Well, I happen to have a digital video camera, and there are a number of bloggers with huge audiences who are just fascinated by the power of the New Media. Speaker Murphy isn’t exactly Dan Rather, but video of a blogger being dragged out of the state house or having his equipment confiscated would raise a whole series of interesting questions — from the status of bloggers as news gatherers to citizens’ right to an open government.
I have sparse time to be making that sort of political statement, but the lure of this particular gauntlet may prove too strong to resist. Hopefully Mr. Murphy will save both of us the time and trouble.