Although Editor & Publisher reacted before anyone else, liberal bloggers (including me) joined in the fun by first deriding the selection of bloggers, which led to the additions noted above, and then by digging up numerous examples of a Gannon/Guckert journalistic hallmark: plagiarism. So we now had — still have — a two-front war, with the ommission of the liberal bloggers whose investigative efforts broke the Gannon story, and with the now well-documented plagiarism problem.
Adding insult to already injured sensibilities, the NPC decided to close the proceedings to the general public (read: bloggers) and limit the audience to NPC members and credentialed journalists. Ironically, the new restrictions would prevent three of the panelists, GG, Wonkette and Graff, from attending were they not on the panel.
One can't help but think that the Press Club may be regretting their decision to invite GG, or at least to do so in the way that they did. And one can't help but think that with a week to go and pressure building to focus on the questions of GG's White House access and his plagiarism, he may be regretting the invite as well; bookies have the odds on his appearance at 60-40 for and falling. The next week should be interesting.
The über-irony is that after all the fuss, the question, "Who is a Journalist," probably isn't even worth discussing. Journalists are people who do the stuff that journalists do, from investigative reporting to commentary. The most common beef the institutional press have with bloggers is our presumed lack of responsibility and accuracy, but as every paper with a press critic and every J-school magazine prove, one needn't be a blogger to get things hideously wrong, or to plagiarise or lie or bow to corruption. It's a subject that fascinates some among the institutional press, mostly those who view journalism more as a besieged priesthood than a trade, but that doesn't hold much interest for most bloggers beyond the question of gaining access to the places we'd like to go to get our stories.
But if you want to get in on the controversy — and the field is wide open for conservative bloggers; why should we on the left have all the fun?— you've still got that one-week window to check out the panel and weigh in with your own comments or grievances or both.
Blog on, my brothers and sisters ....