Whenever we talk about bloggers or others outside the mainstream press doing some kind of investigative reporting, some traditional journalists tend to stop by and complain that even if it was done this one time
by this one
individual, that individual
won't stick around and do any future investigative reporting. However, that seems to miss the point. With the new tools of production these days, the simple fact is that if there's a story to get out, anyone can now get it out there and get it attention. If they only do it once in their lives, that's great. The next story will be done by someone else. Again, this isn't to knock professional reporters -- who I still believe strongly have a place in this ecosystem. But the complaints that investigative reporting simply won't be done without newspapers still rings incredibly hollow.
In the latest example, sent in by Chris
, a blogger in Florida has apparently been doing an excellent job breaking a number of key stories concerning a recent murder
. Even the local police say they're now seriously investigating leads brought to their attention by this guy's reporting -- even as the local mainstream press continued to argue against what the guy was reporting. It's still not settled what happened exactly, and some of the blogger's ideas may not turn out to be true, but as the NY Times notes, he has not yet had to retract any of his posts, and many of the factual points he's raised have later proved to be true.