Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Can Katie Couric Guest-Edit for Matt Drudge?

Can Katie Couric, the new anchor for CBS News (and falling to third place rapidly against NBC and ABC), really wield journalistic power where it matters? I am talking about Matt Drudge's famous web site which, according to a recent ABC News story, is "the single most powerful news source in the nation".

There's a school of thought that the only reason the hunkered-down males running network news let a gal sit in the anchor chair is because network news doesn't mean a whole lot anymore. Anyway, not what it used to mean. Remember when Walter Cronkite was "the most trusted man in America"? If he cared, America cared. These days, who really watches the news at 6:30 anyway? It's a little bit quaint in an era of cable news, internet news and of course, blogs.

Back to the Drudge Report. Some folks accuse him of having a conservative, Republican slant. And many believe ABC news has become a sort of weak-tea version of Fox. Which would explain why ABC chose to run the big puffy story on Drudge in the first place: let's give Matt Drudge candy by doing a soft publicity spot for him. We'll call it news. He'll be nice to us--maybe even give us a scoop! And no one will notice. Will they? According the the ABC story, senior press people in the Bush Administration claim they check Drudge "thirty or forty times a day". Amazing! There's no telling when Drudge will print some fake story that he can later retract, but in the meantime can be used to smear a Democrat.

Now, back to Katie. Since the only interesting part of her getting the anchor chair is that the anchor chair ostensibly "matters" and so represents a new milestone in gender equality; but since that chair really matters less than Drudge, Editor of the "most influential news source in the nation" (according to ABC); and assuming we're all pulling for both Katie and gender equality; doesn't it make sense that to accomplish gender equality in news, Katie should Guest-Edit at the Drudge Report? At least once in a while? Or maybe they can switch places now and again.

How about a nationwide campaign to see Katie Guest-Edit the Drudge Report? And to see Drudge in his floppy hat as CBS anchor? Send emails to Katie, Matt and while you're at it, to ABC News asking why Matt Drudge is news to them.


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