In the various discussions of whether or not bloggers are journalists, or the distinctions between war bloggers and tech bloggers, or what we do when we blog, perhaps we’ve taken for granted one of the most distinctive qualities of blogs and blogging: linking.
The emphasis on linking in blogs appealed to me immediately; linking is, after all, a way of creating footnotes and citations, something that as a medievalist, I must do all the time. But because of the emphasis on linking in blogs—the ease of creating citations, of providing source text and gloss side by side, bloggers make it easy for their readers to verify their data . As bloggers we present our sources with our conclusions, allowing us, as Ken Layne put it, to “fact check your ass.”
Updated 11/20/2005:Thanks to Ken Smith’s heads up I’ve updated the links in this post.