Monday, May 01, 2006

Blogs, Breaks, and Brodkorb

Tim O'Brien of the Star Tribune pulls out the trusty old timestamp attack against conservative bloggers. The gist of the argument is that any blog entries during the business day indicate a sinister plot involving the day job of a part-time blogger. O'Brien makes assumptions about Michael Brodkorb's work hours and then concludes that Brodkorb has a "really nice employer."

Kennedy v. Machine has a nice rebuttal here. This issue came up last year when the both Nick Coleman and City Pages questioned the work habits of the Powerline guys. Mitch Berg had a good response to that attack here and here. I dubbed the non-story "Coffee Break-gate."


Blogger lloydletta said...

Well I think there is a story on Powerline's Hindrocket and Big Trunk, partly because until about a year ago, they gave work contact numbers on their blog, and with them, their secretaries answer their work phones, so it involves staff at the job doing blog related stuff. I think the PL folks tried a number of times to get Nick Coleman in trouble at work, and my guess is he returned the favor.

Employers should establish clear policies on this issue - and communicate those policies to employees.

May 02, 2006 1:12 AM  
Blogger Peter said...


Bloggers (myself included) complained to the Star Tribune about things written in the Star Tribune. Day job complaints should go to the day job boss. Those complaining about PL disagreed with the ideology of the writers and tried to hurt them in other aspects of their lives.

Nick Coleman and City Pages did not complain about the secretarial issue you are bringing up (Admin-gate?). I think that is reaching just a bit. Would you extend the criticism to a college policy librarian who gives out their day job business card at a political party event? :-) In the case of Powerline, they naively linked to/posted their Claremont Institute biographies that included their day job phone numbers. They are guilty of not anticipating the popularity of their blog and the venom of their detractors.

Yes, employers should establish clear policies on everything from blogging to breaks to work hours. In the case of Brodkorb and PL, we have no indication what these policies are (and arguably it is none of our business). So people should be very careful about deciding whether or not someone is shirking their day job responsibilities.

May 02, 2006 7:10 AM  
Blogger Marty said...

Or you could just change the timestamp on your blog.

May 03, 2006 11:45 AM  

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