26 July 2006

Blogging Is . . .

(hat tip, and misleading headline, ['Jeopardy' Champ Ken Jennings Blasts Show...], from Drudge)

. . . Never being quoted in context by the dead tree media.

Now the AP picks up where the NYPost has left off regarding Ken Jennings. At first it was one humor impaired writer who thought he'd, 'show that uppity Ken Jennings who's really in charge' or some such nonsense.

The AP story does quote from Ken's blog (but doesn't provide the web address --- message to all you dead tree story writers, what's so freakin' hard about providing the freakin' web address on the print version?!? (space considerations might be an excuse in print, but the code for the web version, even when it's syndicated to other outlets should have links embedded in the story where appropriate, that's just common courtesy, dammit!)).

However, the AP make it sound like there's some major tiff that has developed between Ken Jennings and Jeopardy! now

Jennings, a software engineer from Salt Lake City, won $2.5 million during his 74-game winning streak on "Jeopardy!" in 2004. He took aim at what he said were the show's "effete, left-coast" categories and "same-old" format.

"You're like the Dorian Gray of syndication," he wrote. "You seem to think `change' means replacing a blue polyethylene backdrop with a slightly different shade of blue polyethylene backdrop every presidential election or so."After reports of his comments appeared in the media Tuesday, Jennings countered on his Web site that his letter was meant to be "a humor piece."

"For the record: I've loved `Jeopardy!' since I was a kid, as anyone who talks to me for about five minutes knows. Making goofy jokes about TV shows isn't `bashing.' I believe it's the whole reason Al Gore invented the Internet."

A call by The Associated Press to "Jeopardy!" spokesman Jeff Ritter wasn't returned.

The AP also attempted to reach Jennings through a Los Angeles-based agency that represents him.

If you read Ken's original post, and then his response to the initial criticism of the post, it would be clear to anyone who doesn't have an agenda of their own that the situation is as Ken described, he was just having some fun, and tweaking a show that he loves (just like my own post on the original post was meant to gently tweak Ken Jenning's blog, which is a blog I've quickly grown to enjoy, also, I keeeeeeeeeeed, becaus I love, I'm like Triumph in that way).

The 'neither parties could be reached through their publicists' ploy is usually a way for an article to say without saying it directly that there's smoke (and therefore fire) here, and you know they're just trying to craft a carefully worded statement to make the whole mess go away.

Also, I might detect just a hint of red state bashing in the article given that they still describe Mr. Jennings as a 'software engineer from SLC' rather than a 'writer from Seattle' which is what he is now, and would be readily discernible if the author had taken the time to do the very basic research required of them of actually reading Ken's blog (which is still relatively new, and could be read in its entirety in less than an hour).

(maybe this recent Al Gore tweaking post has something to do with the attack on Ken Jennings, no one messes with the fearless leader of the left, Al Gore, and gets away with it, they're all too busy trying to convince him that he must run for president again, the world needs his leadership, or some such nonsense, they can't let anyone get in the way of this campaign)

Tim McGwire narrates the AP Video (can't direct link, just look for the box at the earlier AP link fixed now, I think, but only if you are using IE6 as your browser) (viewable in IE6 (or higher if you love MS betas, I'm this close to creating a partition and trying out Vista myself)) of this article. The humorlessness of the video is even worse than the humorlessness of the original piece. In fact it's so humorless that it transcends that humorlessness and comes around the other side to become COMEDY GOLD!!

These authors are probably just pissed off cause they keep missing all the questions on the Tuesday Trivia EMails (woohoo 7/7 last week for me!!! along with 39 others, Ken even mentions The Incredibles regarding this fact).

Ken Jennings can squelch all this by making a joint appearance with Alex Trebex (I'm sorry, the Trebekbot 4000 cyborg) at a function in support of a charity that Mr. Trebek supports (I'm guessing Canadians for the Preservation and Continued Overpronounciation of Foreign Phrases In English Society, or maybe The Retirement Fund for Former Jesuit Seminarians Who Go On to Become World Famous Game Show Hosts Society, or maybe UNICEF, even) .

On the brighter side, there's no such thing as bad publicity, so hopefully this mini-maelstrom of controversy might boost sales of his forthcoming book.

(and yes, this post's title was inspired by that insipid one panel comic that has lasted inexplicably for decades)

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