Focus on Andrew Malcolm

MalcolmA long story at Editor & Publisher.com on newspaper political blogs ledes with the veteran reporter who co-writes Top of the Ticket, the L.A. Times campaign blog. The story muses, what if style, on how blogs might have changed the political landscape in 1968, when Andrew Malcolm first began writing about politics.

Chances are, that blog would have been the first place the newspaper posted insider reaction to Lyndon Johnson's sudden withdrawal from the race --- and on-the-scene reports from the raucous Democratic convention in Chicago.

It's even possible that long-shot challengers Eugene McCarthy and George Wallace might have gotten more votes in a "grassroots" media environment. Who knows? Richard M. Nixon might have lost the November election, had a mainstream blogger uncovered one of his many dirty tricks.

There would have been more information available to readers, "and sooner," says Malcolm, who has been writing full time for the Los Angeles Times' "Top of the Ticket" blog since June. "Wallace would have done better because he could have reached more people sooner. You would have seen developments sooner."

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"It is 'round the clock, it's demanding," says Malcolm, 64. Not only is the process of delivering political news via blogs a lot faster than traditional models, "it is a lot more unpredictable," he adds.

Malcolm's latest post: Obama, in Iowa, just said something he might regret


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