Tuesday 20 July 2010

Nosemonkey and Jon Worth: Founding Fathers of Euroblogging

In a blog entry Jon Worth recalled that his Euroblog turned five years old (a venerable age in the online world).

At the same time, Jon reminded that in the world of Euroblogging in English, only Nosemonkey had been at it longer.

Both jonworth and Nosemonkey were feted like Founding Fathers by members of the core Euroblogosphere on Twitter, the medium of choice for quick interaction between bloggers on European affairs.

Nosemonkey and Jon Worth have drawn much inspiration from the fertile soil of England, where anti-EU tabloids constantly strive for new lows in their reporting and commenting on the European Union, and a large part of the public is uninformed enough to swallow anything, as long as it is negative.

When the European Parliament rapporteur on media mistrusted the reliability of social media as sources, Jon was right to point out the stupidity of the attitude:

Why the hell should we inherently trust m'stream media?

There are, of course, social media players as reckless with the truth as many virulently anti-EU British mainstream publications with huge readership (often mutually reinforcing), but I have also seen quality blogging on par with and sometimes surpassing the standards of even the best publications in English.

Even if the impact of conscientious Eurobloggers is small, quality blogging on EU affairs is a laudable pursuit. Checking facts and accounting for sources are foundations for good writing on relevant themes. Generous, but critical blog discussion could be stepped up, because it adds an important element of quality control.

The Founding Fathers have blazed a trail in the European social media world.

Ralf Grahn


  1. Let's just say when you know a topic well, take the EU for example, you often notice big mistakes made in mainstream media, which is scary because you wonder if there are as many mistakes in other topics you know less and therefore wouldn't spot...

    I remember French TF1 turning Flanders and Wallonia upside down on a map... and another day, placing Sweden where Finland is. I remember a Spanish news programme saying that Sardaigne is a French island... sic.

  2. Europasionaria,

    You are quite right in what you are saying; mainstream media are not more immune to gross errors than anybody else.

    At least three aspects are important for the Euroblogosphere:

    1) We should try to check facts and improve our value judgments on EU affairs, and we should try to offer helpful comments to each other in order to raise blogging quality.

    2) The ones of us who are interested in or even passionate about Europe, should describe and comment on the EU openly and critically, without showing misplaced deference.

    3) Media critique is as important as subjects on the EU proper, because both mainstream media and social media are prone to unintentional errors and deliberate misrepresentations. (As Jon Worth and Nosemonkey have pointed out, Britain is the home of profound ignorance.)


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