The free web, supported entirely by advertising, has revolutionized the flow of information but has devastated traditional journalism by giving uniformed bloggers and astroturfing advertising campaigns an equal presence next to legitimate news sources, erasing any sense of journalistic integrity and reputation.
"traditional journalism" has lulled us into war, printed complete untruths, reprinted corporate, party political and military press releases as "news" and blighted individual (and in the case of a close friend, destroyed) lives to sell print. One of the superb aspects of the internet is that it allows the likes of AppleInsider readers and many, many others to write about the world from their point of view. It allows communities, non-mainstream groups and 'alternative' news that the corporate media would like to withhold to be made available. In short it enables an individual with a blog or web design program and without a cool million or two in the bank to create a web site with an equal presence to the likes of News corporation, CNN and others of their ilk who have billions of pounds at their disposal. And that's not even considering that those same organisations often have television and print to spread their thoughts around the world as well.
So, bring on the 'uniformed [sic] bloggers' I say
It has also enabled widespread content theft, where news and information published by a reputable source at significant cost can be freely plagiarized by anonymous individuals
If our 'reputable' and 'trustworthy' media didn't simply regurgitate news from "officials" or "government sources" and so on as journalism as well as passing off lies and pure fabrication as "news" then such worries may have some basis. Anyway, it's always been possible to pass off someone else's work as your own for a long time, electronic distribution has simply made it easier.