Patterico has been working hard on a piece about the LA Times flubbing a piece on US Military activity, and he’s been “rebuked” by CENTCOM about requests for information:
Thank you for your support for the troops; we appreciate your attempts to set the record straight on your blog; which by the way is very impressive and does have quite a following. However, this forum is reserved for credentialed media outlets. If we stop to answer every blogger in world who has a question we will be inundated. Our first priority is getting the credentialed media the correct information as quickly as possible so that they can present a balanced story. That in itself is quite a challenge, as you can imagine, in the fog of war and with intricacies of this mission. I hope that you will not take offense and understand, but please refrain from contacting the Press Desk unless you can provide media credentials.
Translation: “Let me say this politely. You are just a blogger and we have real media to deal with.”
Malkin agrees with Patterico.
But I don’t. While it’s great that there are independent journalists (bloggers) out there, there are also tens of thousands of political blogs. If half wanted information from CENTCOM about this, that and the other, CENTCOM’s press resources would be overwhelmed. Patterico admits this. And he did get the information he needed.
The simple solution to this is to get press credentials. Start up something like PajamasMedia, or join PajamasMedia. Don’t whine that you can’t get the attention of CENTCOM because you simply want it.
Patterico does great work. He’s relentlessly hounded the LA Times. I don’t think it would be too hard for him to slap a resume, recent writings, and submit them to a larger internet media conglomerate just to get some press cred. Then he can get CENTCOM’s ear all the time.
CENTCOM has to be very careful in dealing with bloggers, particularly conservative bloggers. They can’t have blogs getting information the MSM doesn’t and then attack the MSM with that information. You think the press is hostile to the military now, wait until they think that is SOP. So someone up the ladder at CENTCOM Press had to let Patterico know that he wasn’t “proper media” so they could 1) cover their hindquarters and 2) reveal something unspoken that he himself picked up on– that the LA Times had purposefully not printed the full story, nor had they issued a correction.
He may feel slighted that CENTCOM was giving him the “brush off”. But they weren’t. They were actually offering help. If he gets the press credential, probably something relatively simple, then he can freely communicate without the appearance of bias.
Me? No PressCred here. I’ve got myself a full-time job. Speaking of which…