Squeaky wheel gets the juice

· Event blogging

Coincidence or response to my gripes, it doesn’t matter which, but the three blogs featuring most of my convention blogging have finally been added to the Convention Bloggers website, yielding 130 additional readers in the last half day (at this moment – updated stats at the RFB referrer rankings page at Salon).
Most of my traffic has come from photos of Atrios and Kos, respectively, with Kevin Drum readers coming in droves on Tuesday and wingnuts flooding in today to gawk at libruls and mock their lack of diversity, or bitchiness, or something. Who is Allah Pundit, anyway?

Fear itself

· conventionology

boo!Dave Johnson picks up on a Reuters article on an interesting study of how “fear of death wins votes”:

President Bush may be tapping into solid human psychology when he invokes the Sept. 11 attacks while campaigning for the next election, U.S. researchers said on July 29, 2004. Talking about death can raise people’s need for psychological security, the researchers report in studies to be published in the December issue of the journal Psychological Science and the September issue of the Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin.

Journalist at work!

· Event blogging

journalists practice an archaic form of notetaking involving graphite, wood, and metalic ring bindings
Journalist practicing archaic form of notetaking involving making marks with graphite and wood on wood pulp held together with metallic ring bindings

Chivalry dead?

· Event blogging

Alison Teal notices that the bloggers have been fiercely territorial about seating and vantage points in the blogger section, and that there seems to be a politeness differential across the generation gap(s):

There is a reserved section on the seventh floor for the bloggers, but I’ve stopped going there. The Internet has been a little sketchy and the floor is uncomfortable. All the desks are taken by the time I get there and to my surprise none of the twenty and thirty year olds are jumping up to offer an elderly woman their seat.
I spent the first night on the floor leaning against a makeshift desk leg, complaining loudly about my arthritis and aching back in vain. On the second night, the desks and chairs began to free up right before Theresa’s speech. Seriously. I guess the younger people thought she wasn’t going to have anything of interest to say. I’ve long been a fan and still think she has the most to say – and in five languages. So I’m sort of saying “shove it” to the floor of the blogging section, which makes posting a bit harder.

Perhaps it has to do with rock-concert mores. If you decide to go to the pre-convention parties while others station themselves in a seat, the others feel entitled to the seats they have staked out for themselves, at the cost of missing out on some of the free drinks and corporate pork.
Also, no matter how loudly Teal complained, I doubt it was louder than the crazy-making din that builds and builds all night, along with the temperature and the tempers of everyone trying to file their stories.
There also seems to be some kind of instant hierarchy among the supposedly egalitarian blogger set.
Some come early and grab the best seats and have sat in those best seats the whole time. Others come early and grab the other good seats (high chairs) on the above level.
The CNN/Technorati team (no credentialed blogger among them) always have about a quarter of the primo space locked up, or they give it magnanimously to people who arrive later, never “upgrading” those of us squeezed into the awful chairs. (Whine, whine.)
The rest of us squeeze into tiny stadium seats and then have to deal with nonbloggers and journalists and cameraman constantly squeezing through that tiny space, jostling our laptops, stepping on our cords and often yakking loudly.
That’s one of the reasons why I didn’t even go into the hall on Wednesday. Burn out and frustration. I watched Edwards speech from the Blogger Bash. I watched the rest of the speeches in various bars and other public spots earlier in the evening. I talked to a lot of noncredentialed people and locals. I knew I had to save up my energy for the last push tonight.
I do apologize for not giving up my hardwon seat on Tuesday night. Then again, I haven’t been in any airconditioned, premium, or “honored guest” suites, myself.

To err is Truman

· Event blogging

Dave Winer is annoyed about journalists mangling his web address.
I know how he feels. I’m still sort of annoyed that none of the blogs I’m covering the convention for are included in Dave’s aggregrator.
I don’t believe – as Liza suggested in a comment elsewhere – that this is a deliberate oversight. It’s a mistake. A mistake that depresses my readership numbers and represents something of a missed opportunity, but no doubt an honest mistake nonetheless.
Bloggers and journalists do have a number of things in common. They make mistakes, they trust sources without checking them or updating them when they change. They get distracted. They set priorities about what is important enough to warrant a share of their divided attention and what isn’t. We’re sisters under the skin.
Also, like the 15,000 journalists here reporting on the nonstory, I came here primarily to further my career and elevate my status in the world of opinion and influence.
I used to live in a room full of mirrors. Pot. Kettle. Black.

Michael Moore’s speech

· conventionology

Dave Johnson from Seeing the Forest points to this transcript of Michael Moore’s speech from Tuesday: AlterNet: Election 2004: Michael Moore’s Speech in Cambridge, Mass..
I was culling through my notes from that day, so here are some of the highlights, based on my own transcription.
To the press:

We need you to do your job. Ask the questions. Demand evidence. Don’t ever let them send us to war again without demanding evidence.

To the crowd of progressives (after mentioning how cowed everyone had been, how every protestation about the war had had to be accompanied by a mealy-mouthed disclaimer saying “I support the troops”

Of course you support the troops. You’ve always supported the troops. You’ve always been on their side.

To the press again:

You haven’t just been “embedded.” You’ve been “in bed with” … the wrong people.

On political polling that focuses on “likely voters”:

It’s cool to talk about politics now. It’s uncool to be apathetic. If you talked about politics [before] you were seen as kind of strange and wonky but that’s no longer the case, which is why Jon Stewart is so popular. That’s the big story the media has missed. There has been this big shift in the country.

On Dale Earnhardt taking his crew to see F9/11 and recommending that “all Americans” should see it:

I fell off the couch! Then I said a little prayer for George W. Bush. I said “Omigod, I hope he’s not watching this right now and eating pretzels.”

On the contradictions of capitalism:

[F9/11] made more money than any Disney film this year… will make at least a quarter billion dollars around the world by the time it’s done. This incredible [aspect[ of capitalism that has always worked in my favor… The rich man will sell you the rope to hang him with.

A Canadian journalist told me (Thank God for the Canadians. They’re just like us, only better. They’re sort of like the Red Sox, you know. Their time will come. They like us, they really do, you know, the Canadians. They like us, they just wish we’d read a little more) that the Saudi royals own [17%?] of Euro-Disney. [They wrote] a $300,000,000,000 bailout check to Eisner, brokered by … the Carlyle Group. My film was already done but i was like “can it get any worse? are they everywhere?”

On progressives not getting lazy or being prematurely triumphant about winning this election:

The other side, the unelected side who occupy our White House, they are not going to go peacefully. They like being in charge with no mandate. They actually believed they could take us to war with no mandate from the people, and they knew that they had to lie to the people [about the implied Saddam/911 connection to do it].
They are better fighters than we are. You have to give it up for them They get up at six in the morning to figure out which minority group they’re going to screw today. That’s the hate that they eat for breakfast.
Our side, we never see six in the morning… unless we’ve been up all night.

On Kerry’s position on the war:

Reporters have been asking me while i’ve been at the convention, “How do you square the fact that John Kerry voted for the war.
My answer is similar to the answer I gave to a soldier who stopped me on the street, [who told me], “I was on a ship [near] Iraq the night of the Oscars and we watched you give your speech and we booed along with the audience. i was very angry with you about what you said that night, but now that I’ve served my tour in Iraq [I see that] what you said was the truth. We were sent to war under false pretenses. I want to apologize to you for booing.”
I told him, “You owe me no apology. it is we, the American people, who need to apologize to you, for sending you into harm’s way based on a lie.
I apologize to you.
Your only crime is you believed your president. Why would you apologize for believing your commander-in-chief. You’re supposed to be able to believe in your commander-in-chief….
What we left with if you can’t believe anything that’s being said by the man that sits in the White House?
Kerry did what 70-80% of Americans did. He believed.

On the anti-war learning curve:

We’re getting better at this. During Vietnam it took years. This time, it only took months!

On good Republicans:

I get mail from Republicans. I love these letters. There are good Republicans…. They just don’t want to spend their hard earned money. [We need to tell them that]
Bush took it from them… and their children… He’s the anti-conservative. He doesn’t really believe in conservative values.

On the tactic of attacking Ralph Nader:

This is so wrong, and so misguided and so uncool to do this. [Don’t spend time] attacking Ralph Nader. Give those thinking of voting for Ralph Nader a reason to vote for John Kerry.