Ben Hammersley says

Ben Hammersley says: “Yahoo is the new Google. Google is the new Yahoo.

(For the record, despite this,
I refuse any association with this Yahoo! is cool meme. After careful
consideration since that first post, I’ve done enough personal research to
determine that Yahoo! is, in fact, not cool. For the record, neither is
Google. And while I’m at it, neither is Apple. In fact, the only thing
that is cool these days is Eagle Creek packing gear and Merlin Mann’s hipster PDA.)

(via: Rex)

Who is the first White House blogger?

Who was the first White House blogger? This is old news, in a couple of ways, but Robert Cox blogged something last night that, for obvious reasons, made me a little curious, myself. Bob, in reference to the publicity Garrett Graff received for his efforts to be the first blogger to get a day-pass to attend a White House press briefing, says that Garrett asked him whether or not that was a “first.”

Here’s Bob’s answer:

“Being credentialed “yes” blogging from the White House “no”. I imagine there are more than a few anoniblogs coming from folks working for the Administration and I do know that MBA Member Rex Hammock made news blogging a meeting with President Bush a year ago. For now I’d give the “first” nod to Rex….”

As the “blogging” part of being at the White House was a rather spontaneous thing, I’ve never really thought of it as being any kind of “first.” Frankly, it was not until Dan Gillmor mentioned it in his book, We the Media, that I considered it being anything of a blogging milestone (other than the historic reason this weblog will likely ever be linked to by

While Robert Cox, the founder of the Media Bloggers Association, is a great observer of such things and I’ll take his word, I can think of at least two others who may be able to make a ruling on who was the first White House blogger as they had a fairly close observation point during the period: The Washington Post’s Dan Froomkin and Patrick Rufinni, who served as webmaster of Bush-Cheney campaign.

Ironically, Patrick agrees with little Dan has to say these days.

Larry Dobrow is wrong

I’ve never met MediaPost’s Larry Dobrow, but I have linked to him often here on the rexblog. I usually link to his weekly magazine reviews on my link blog,, as well.

Today, I received his review of Popular Science via e-mail and could barely believe what I was reading. First, here’s what I wrote about the magazine about year ago, so obviously I am a fan and biased. However, shortly after I wrote that review, the magazine received the 2004 National Magazine Award for General Excellence, which is the closest thing the consumer magazine industry has to the Oscar for the Best Movie of the Year.

Okay, so here is what Larry has to say about the current recipient of the National Magazine Award for General Excellence:

“Since the onset of the Internet era, however, the mag has felt somewhat dated and, at times, irrelevant. It’s not that Popular Science has dumbed itself down or appreciably changed its focus, just that it pales in comparison to shiny technology tracts like Wired. A telescope isn’t the glam accessory it once was, you know.”

Larry then goes on-and-on with a curious type of positive nod to the editorial, “…the publication’s writing and reporting remains as crisp as ever, with a tone that hits the sweet spot between abstruse and shallow” and a slam to the magazine’s design: “Put simply, the design is an affront to the words it houses.” Larry then gives the current winner of the National Magazine Award for General Excellence this bottom line:

All things considered, Popular Science is in better shape than other titles that are supposedly in flux: it has a distinctive voice and mission, as well as a vast reservoir of credibility upon which to draw. But until the mag brings its design into the 2000s – hell, into the 1990s – it risks diluting the impact of its expertise. It’s a problem to be addressed sooner rather than later.

As I read, I kept expecting Larry to bring up why he thought the judges of the National Magazine Award for General Excellence were dumb-asses. But no where in the review can I find him mentioning that the magazine has a reputation for anything other than being old and dated and out-of-touch with what’s happening in all those “shiny” magazines like Wired.

Sorry, Larry. Popular Science is firmly in 2004. However, it may be time for you to get drug foward a bit.