The web has always been a place for sharing rants, and now we can do it with instantaneous results.
No, I’m not going to add (much) to theÂ cacophonyÂ about Kevin Smith and Southwest Airlines, other than to say that his fame certainly juiced the attention to the cause. His rant is one of an outsider, who rails against conspiracies and things he does not understand. Most of our ranting, whether it be about sports or politics or economics, is the ravings of an outsider.
When you get an insider’s view of events, then you’re in for a treat.
I’ve written quite a bit about my former career in television news, and if you click around on the Television and Broadcasting tags here you’ll find a number of entries where I’ve taken the news-folk to task for being lazy or just plain dumb. I can do that, because I’ve walked in their shoes, and know what they could be doing instead of what they put on the air.
There are others ranting, though. Like this network insider who knows the Snowpocalypse coverage is overblown, and the inherent hypocrisy in the way it is delivered. The Social Web gives us instant publishing capabilities, allowing us to share these insider perspectives in safe and anonymous ways.
This isn’t anything new, however. Sure, it’s cheap when others are hosting. And a site like “The Daily Rundown” can get a larger audience today, with more people online and more people aware that such inside dirt is being dished. But the online rants go back more than a decade.
Over the next several weeks, I’ll be sharing (with permission) the rants of Michael Carpenter. I first got to know him in an online forum where broadcast journalists would meet to talk about storytelling, the craft, how to get a job, and how to survive in the industry. By the time I got to know “mcarp,” he was already done and gone. But he had his very own website, which in 1998 was cool! And he wrote openly and honestly about the world of broadcast news, which was even more cool! And he pulled no punches, which was the coolest part of all.
Sadly, his site has been through several revisions and the “mcarp Institute for Situational Journalism Ethics” is no more. But I saved his essays, which are still as valid and relevant today.
Michael Carpenter, you taught me that it was okay to be Howard Beale. How our nation would have been better served if we had remembered Howard Beale and what he stood for.
Stay tuned. The mcarp essays are coming.