Five years ago, daddy-blogger Dave Winer bet NYT president Martin Nisenholtz that by 2007, blogs would be more relevant sources than the Times in Google search results for the year's top news stories. (Obligatory brag: The bet was my idea.) The Long Now Foundation has handed down its final decision on the bet. The Times came out ahead on the mortgage crisis. Blogs won on the other four topics — the Iraq war, Virgina Tech's shootings, oil prices, and Chinese exports. But you need to know that the Long Now panel blamed the bet's terms for its lopsided outcome:
Had the bet been structured around commercial vs. noncommercial content, and they had chosen an average ranking system (which actually seems to answer the question being asked more clearly), commercial content would have won by a factor of more than four.I'm pretty sure that when Winer envisioned a future media landscape dominated by blogs, he wasn't thinking TMZ.