As Dave Winer notes, Mark Anderson, writer of the hugely influential Strategic News Service email newsletter is now blogging. I met Mark a couple of years ago while working at PC Pro magazine, and he’s probably one of the smartest people I’ve ever met.
Mark has already written an excellent analysis of the issues surrounding Steve Jobs’ knowledge (or lack thereof) of the whole Apple stock options issue. To quote:
“Here is my conclusion: I think (and I have no direct evidence for this, other than the behaviors and quotes from those involved) that Steve Jobs was aware of the practice, did personally benefit, and had some role in the granting and dating of those options.
I expect that the company is doing its best to find fall guys and scenarios that will allow Steve to stay. Apple, I am afraid, has a real problem, the only problem that it can’t work around. It is trying, but time does not, in fact, heal all wounds. I’ve come to the tentative conclusion that Steve was involved.”
Ouch. Mark speaks not only from authority, but as someone’s who’s been a huge fan of the way Steve has taken Apple since his return.
“A lot of people have called me the Guy Who Brought Steve Back, since I suggested the success of that move when Gil Amelio was CEO, and an avid reader of SNS. Gil, by the way, should always get the real credit for having saved Apple, by bringing Steve back, when no other CEO would touch him.
I’d hate to also be the guy who showed him the door. He’s doing a miracle job at Apple, and I, for one, would like to see it continue.”
With the amount of busy time I have at the moment, it takes something to actually rouse me to blog. Jason Calacanis, who really should know better, manages it:
"Kudos to Sean Bonner for stepping in and standing up for Xeni (and bloggers breaking news everywhere) when Washington Post journo Brian Krebs cribbed her story WITHOUT CREDIT."
Except that Sean Bonner’s post and the comments that have followed have demonstrated that he was, in fact, pretty much completely wrong. My friend Quinn provides a timeline that shows that BoingBoing, Wired, and Brian Krebs were working on the same story pretty much at the same time. The original source has confirmed that everyone had the story legitimately and independently. As Quinn puts it:
"These three reporters are ethical people that have my respect and admiration, and I’ve been in touch with everyone giving them my point of view."
Sean Bonner, on the other hand, comes out looking like a complete idiot. Not only has he libelled Brian Krebs – accusing a reporter of plagerism is a very serious matter likely to affect their professional standing – but he’s continuing to stick to his guns in an incredibly weasel-ish way. Had Bonner simply apologised, I’d be giving him kudos for having done so. Instead, he’s still trying to tarnish the reputation of someone who clearly has done nothing wrong.
And this raises a larger point: If bloggers want to be taken as seriously as mainstream media, they need to hold each other to the same standards they demand of MSM, which includes criticising their own when they get it wrong and asking for apologies too. By congratulating Bonner for "calling out" (yuck, hideous Americanism) Krebs, Calacanis is making a foobar. He should know better than to shoot first and ask questions later.