I try to keep editorial statements to the podcast alone. As I end up needing author abilities to post the podcast I also have some access in posting stories. With the controversies that have erupted over the past week I think I should discuss my editorial philosophies a little bit.
I am rooted in the print news business. Once upon a time I covered education, local government, elections, and other politics. My by-line was in print quite a bit about all sorts of topics. My favorite pieces to write were ones where I got to go out to schools and report about good things happening.
As to posting story suggestions, I actually read what is submitted. I try to review such carefully. If something feels wrong, I check your links. In some cases I will do limited copy editing to improve reading ease. I try not to post obvious flame bait but do consider it appropriate to post things relative to knowledge ecology.
The recent flap over a story suggestion by Mdoneil relative to growth in media outlets in Iraq was a story I thought appropriate to post. For anybody providing reference services a post like that is appropriate. Having worked as a teacher I can fathom a teacher asking students in a high school social studies class to secure a news article from foreign news media. I know I had assignments like that pop up while I was in high school. In following each link in that post and adjusting a couple of them to point to the English versions of pages, I learned that there is quite a bit of media growth in Iraq.
Matt was right as that sort of growth in media outlets just has not been reported visibly in normal mass media channels. While I was worried about charges of the post being "political" I decided not to worry about that and have it post. I found there to be worth to that for reference librarians who might want to find competing news sources from abroad. Matt's post was balanced in terms of linking to different media outlets from different points of view. Considering delays in the updating of World Radio-Television Handbook (I have a copy here somewhere at home), there would not necessarily be a reference source able to keep up with sufficient information.
With the comments I have seen from Wisconsin about the recent post by Ian of Unemployedlibrarians infamy, I should also state a few things. First, please remember Blake cross-posted what was found on a listserv. A story suggestion was made of such prior to that, though. After seeing the story suggestion I just deleted it. Too many hallmarks were present that screamed out Ian's handiwork. After the global tongue-lashing that happened last year on iProJobs, LIBJOBS, and elsewhere that that was posted I actually was hoping it would not return this year. Evergreen work issues from one listserv had leaked out into the rest of the Internet, it appears.
Even though I saw comments from a concerned library director as well as comments from a library jobs site poster I will still go along with Blake's posting. Why? LISNews is a site that does not speak with a single voice. The authors each have their respective view of the world around them. My view of the world is likely just as different from Blake's as it would be from Great Western Dragon's. The value that that brings to the reader is hopefully a broadening of horizons with different perspectives. Blake posted with the remark that he found such on PUBLIB. Considering the day and the time, such was an appropriate thing to have happen. If anything such was far, far less sensational than what happened at Wikipedia or YouTube or Google.
The key thing to remember is that LISNews is a human creation. It cannot be perfect although everybody tries. We are all imperfect creatures on Earth. If you have a concern about something I post, wrote, say, or what have you then please contact me. About USD$60 is paid quarterly to have those numbers open for people to call. Why let it only be an Australian politician who has called me using one of those numbers?