The Catholic Church has the Pope, America has the President, rock and roll has the Rolling Stones. And the blogosphere has Glenn Reynolds.
Glenn Reynolds is a law professor at the University of Tennessee Law School, but is known to millions (literally) as Instapundit, one of the earliest and still one of the most popular blogs in the country. Most recently he is the author of “An Army of Davids“, (subtitled, How Markets and Technology Empower Ordinary People to Beat Big Media, Big Government and Other Goliaths) about the empowerment of ordinary people through technology. Yesterday, the Cato Institute held a forum where Glenn spoke, and it was most insightful and entertaining.
Glenn is a real renaissance man, with has blogging passion fighting for prominence with other passions for brewing his own beer at home, writing movie reviews and — as a keyboardist — playing (and recording) music. (Must be something about bloggers that draws us to the music….)
He talked about how the Internet and blogs have allowed people to organize themselves almost instantly these days — and spontaneously — through technology, finding on-line communities of interest. He talked about the public response to the Katrina and Tsunami tragedies and the more political storm that instantly gathered around Dan Rather during the election of 2004. Reynolds calls it “horizontal knowledge”. He talked about the 18th century pamphleteers, comparing the proliferation (now some 30 million) of blogs to its earlier roots.
Michael Barone was there from US News — in the audience with the rest of us — and afterward we had a nice conversation with them both. Reynolds is a bright, insightful guy who’s at the cutting edge of a very new medium. If you’ve not checked out Instapundit, you should. He was nice enough to link to us last week, causing what’s known in the blogosphere as an “Instalanche”, a flood of traffic. We’ll write more about that phenomenon in a day or so.
In any event, it was a good session. We would recommend his book as a handbook for anyone interested in this new technology. We are now the proud owners of an autographed copy.
Update: Here’s a picture of the blogger-in-chief with Prof. Reynolds.
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