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Blog Progress

(May 11, 2006)  Remember the White House correspondent's dinners? In years gone by, they were the news story for the cycle following the event. In this era of doublespeak, disappointment and the lowest ratings since Nixon resigned, the Annual gala where the big, old school American media and the politicos from the beltway gather together to poke fun at each other. It was always a testy affair with comedians wrinkling the highly pressed Washington fabric.

This year, Steven Colbert, the famous graduate of the Daily Show's finishing school, took his turn at comic truth-telling (the video). The results were so pronounced that the big, old school American media didn't even bother to report it the next day. Colbert shocked, insulted and generally pointed at the nakedness of the Emperor. The few outlets that even mentioned the subject chastised his supposed rudeness.

In the old media, any pretense of the press as the check and balance on government disappeared somewhere between WMDs and Abu Gharib. Fortunately, the blogs covered Colbert's performance. Within a few days, the old media, embarrassed into doing its job, started printing stories on the subject. Blogging, which showed its muscle in the last election, has become a force to reckon with in the media.

The point is not to beat a political drum but to point out that blogging has evolved into a force to be reckoned with.

Our blogroll includes nearly 100 industry blogs. Many of them regularly have useful content. With companies like Jobster and HRMDirect leading the charge, blogs are changing the face of our industry as well. The potential exists for blogs to transform our industry in much the same way that they are transforming the role and function of mainstream media.

One of the surprising things we learned from last week's Discrimination Debate (more about that soon) was the degree to which discrimination still exists in the American workplace. With the very limited training available to recruiters, in or out of their organizations, many professionals engage in illegal activities without even knowing that they are illegal.

So much that goes on in our industry needs a little closer inspection and sunlight. There's a lot of corruption in the vendor segment. Awards and recommendations are bought and sold with alarming frequency. The failures are swept under the carpets and blamed on the customers.

We're hoping that some of the blogs will tackle some of the tough issues really facing the industry. While we love the islands of excellence, like Hunter's Talentism, we're looking for meatier stuff. (Hey Jeff, which of your vendors do you hate and why?)

And while we love the work that Jobster is doing to dethrone the existing process, where are the blogs talking about the customer's perspective?

Part of the next generation of information outlet is going to have to include the naysayers.

Tomorrow: Risks and Benefits of Recruiting Blogs

 John Sumser . - .  Permalink . - . Today's Bugler

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