Washington, DC is abuzz today with the fallout of a momentous week’s news. Harriet Miers is toast. Lewis Libby suddenly finds he has a lot of time on his hands. And Karl Rove is still left sweating.
And who frames this debate? Who to a large extent drives it, shapes it, boosts it? The blogs. Blogging in the US is huge. To take one example, the Daily Kos, one of the leading liberal blogs, gets a daily readership of nearly 850,000. Well over three quarters of a million. Adjusting for population, a UK blog would need to get a daily readership of around 200,000 to compete. And yet how many British blogs get even one percent of that figure? Even half of one percent? Precious few.
What is the matter with us British bloggers? Where are we going wrong? Is it that:
- we are just not as clever as the Americans?
- we are stymied by the Official Secret Acts?
- we spend too much time trashing each other or writing posts on the lines of: ‘X wrote this in a newspaper today, X is an idiot, hurrah’?
- the British mainstream media does a better job than its US counterpart, thus reducing the need for blogs?
Or is there some other, deeper national malaise that we need to crack?