Pajamas Media has scheduled Nov. 16 as launch day in New York for its right-leaning (but perhaps not entirely) blog news service and advertising combine. The leaders are high-traffic political bloggers: Angelenos Roger L. Simon and Charles Johnson plus Instapundit Glenn Reynolds. A name change is in the cards before the launch, says the PJM site, which is busy rolling out short profiles of an editorial board and participating bloggers including Michael Barone, David Corn, Cathy Seipp, Eric Umansky and local Bear Flag League member Baldilocks. Syndicated columnist Jill Stewart, who wears the title of West Coast editor, is doing the profiles. Simon posts:
We're very excited about that board because it mixes well-known bloggers with well-known MSM people (sympathetic to blogs - some blog themselves). They also come from all sides of the political spectrum. What we intend to do is tone down the rhetoric and increase the dialogue. We don't know if this is possible, but we intend to try.
Given the tilt of the key players, I'm skeptical the product will actually reflect much of any spectrum. None of their blogs value that now—they are popular because they are strong, pointed voices—and I can't see them going to all this trouble to promote opinions they detest. But maybe. My personal test for whether it's a news service or just more punditry will be whether Pajamians eschew sacred cows or merely prefer their own bovine. A blog Fox News or a righty opposite to the Huffington Post may be a worthy and viable niche—it's just not groundbreaking, to me. If the PJniks resist right-blog political correctness and report as aggressively on bloggers as they do media, Reeps as they do Dems, war hawks as they do peaceniks, I'll be impressed.
The other leg of the venture is promising to make money for bloggers by leveraging their numbers to sell big-time national advertising. I don't know the details, but there's been a lot of online discussion (and here, here and here) about the contracts that PJM is signing with selected bloggers. Offices, by the way, have been set up in El Segundo.