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April 20, 2008

Baio blog response

In my opinion, I do not think a blogger is as truly a journalist as someone who was trained in college to be one. But this man is a "independent journalist" so to me, they are more of a new age freelance writer, that is why it is surprising to see all the attention that Baio received. Though when you look at the journalistic ethics of the information he published, that was not the right thing to do. Bottom line, it was private information from a company that didn't want it out for the public to see. But, of course, since it was on a blog there was no real "authority" to over see it didn't go out. So I think the whole idea of "publish first, ask questions later" was put into action in a fair way. It's not like this is a top secret government document, it is a interactive fiction game. I would say that this is not technically journalism because of lack of editorial oversight and the medium in which is was presented. That's the basis of journalism the medium and editorial, but I'm guessing if this would have been presented as a story idea to an editor and the editor found out the company wouldn't want this info out there, the story wouldn't happen.

Posted by RachelPrichard at April 20, 2008 1:05 PM


Infocom no longer exists as a company. The intellectutal property of Infocom was bought out by another company (Activision), but that company doesn't reach out to fans of the old Infocom games.

Posted by: Dennis G. Jerz at April 20, 2008 2:50 PM

I agree with you. I feel that you require formal training before becoming professional.

Posted by: Jeremy Barrick at April 21, 2008 10:04 PM

Freelance journalism is great, I think, but is Baio educated in professional press practices? He might have thought twice about pblishing the information on that disk if he had had Newswriting. Baio came off as more of a tattler than a journalist. A true journalist would have known that the publication of those documents was bound to get him in trouble. Was it really all worth it? For God's sake, the company is defunct. The information, I feel, is irrelevant in today's world. The information caters to a specific group of people. The world could probably live without knowing there is an unreleased sequel to the Hitchhiker's game. Like I said in my blog, Watergate dealt with the man running our country; Hitchhiker's is a game that probably anyone under 3 doesn't even remember. Which situation was more pressing?

good movie, though

Posted by: Daniella Choynowski at April 22, 2008 12:36 AM


Do you even know what they're talking about? This is Infocom... *INFOCOM*!

You may not care about this company or their products... but I'd have to say they were pretty significant for numerous artistic and technical reasons. Watergate it isn't, but this story is at least as significant as someone discovering unreleased Parker/Gillespie sessions or previously unknown film of the Beatles arguing over how to arrange Sgt Peppers.

From an strict ethics standpoint, "relevance" maybe shouldn't even be a factor in judging this. Yes, the "forth estate" as a duty to break certain stories with or without consent in order to serve as a check on the government. But at some point, keeping back such valuable primary sources is also be a disservice to historians and critics. Should only the elite have access? Are only "educated" and "properly trained" journalists capable of handling such sources? The question here is at what point does this kind of information slip into the public domain....

Posted by: Jeffro at May 6, 2008 10:18 AM

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