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Xcel Energy Center, St. Paul, MN

Live From Saint Paul

The Republican national convention, referred to as RNC08 is being held just a few blocks from my home. I live in St. Paul, Minnesota. I point out the location of the convention because it is one of the many facts that seems to be escaping the attention of the national media.

It has been an interesting experience, and the convention doesn’t start until Monday. We locals started spotting the FBI agents in early August. Next came the media brining huge trailers, satellite dishes and miles, and miles of cable with them. Then the semi’s started rolling in with all the food and beer.

Where to Find News

Late last week local news organizations started reaching out to people like me asking for any news or photos we might be getting so that they could include a kind of man on the street perspective on their web sites. I have been contributing photos and commentary via Twitter and Flickr.

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Local news outlets are scrambling to be noticed by national media, and the non-traditional media outlets are scrambling to beat the main stream media.

Where are the Protesters?

The war protesters are out in full force. The local and non-traditional media are picking it up and reporting on the arrests and raids. The protesters, the local media, the national media, and the republicans all seem to be using the same hash tags on the internet #RNC08.

It didn’t take me long to discover something that I have known for a long time. The best source of news seems to be the internet. Last night I discovered that by using twitter I could keep track of various news organizations and the protesters. I also discovered that I could pass information back and forth between news organizations by re-tweeting some of the remarks, and the national news media re-tweeted some of my observations.

Twitter, blogs and mobile blogs are having a huge impact on news coverage. They have also become the great equalizer in that anyone can publish and get news. I can say for sure that the protesters are not getting much national news coverage. I guess there is nothing for the national news media to cover if protesters and demonstrators are in jail and can not assemble or speak. If I got all of my news through mainstream media channels I would be missing out on almost all of the pre-convention action.

A local radio station is asking the general public to watch the national media and report errors in coverage. So far there have been plenty because in spite of all the fancy equipment organizations like CNN brought into town they don’t seem to have maps or a GPS. They sit in the heart of the city of St. Paul and report news live from Minneapolis. Can the general public really rely on reporters who don’t even know where they are?

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. . and the national news media covers local real estate?

It is the same with the national coverage of the Real Estate market by the national media. They don’t know what is really going on in a given town or neighborhood. Consumers may be better off reading our blogs and getting that street level view of reality from people who are engaged in the business every day.

Written By

Full time REALTOR and licensed broker with Saint Paul Home Realty Realty in St. Paul, Minnesota. Author of, Columnist for Inman News and an avid photographer.



  1. Missy Caulk

    August 31, 2008 at 7:55 am

    This is an interesting year, huh? Yesterday I followed the MI game on a live blog, the comments throughout were coming in fast and furious.
    It is a whole new era for the conventions too. I think Twitter, blogs etc have become the great equalizer too. HAVE FUN!!

  2. Mack in Atlanta

    September 1, 2008 at 4:53 am

    If John McCain wanted to improve his exposure on the internet he should have selected Teresa Boardman as his running mate!

  3. Glenn fm Naples

    September 1, 2008 at 6:25 am

    National media do in fact read our blogs with real estate market conditions, but they are looking for facts and not spin. Unfortunately, too many real estate agents put a spin on their reporting, which greatly depreciates the value of the individual post.

  4. Teresa Boardman

    September 1, 2008 at 7:13 am

    The national media does not put a spin on the news? wow they have you fooled. They spin it by what they report, what they don’t report and how they report it. I have dealt with a few. They call looking for drama. They have the story all planned out and call Realtors until they find one or two who back it up. They need to sell papers, magazines and ads on television. Yes they are biased.

  5. Bob

    September 1, 2008 at 8:33 am

    Everybody puts a spin on stuff based on their own vested interests.

  6. Louis Cammarosano

    September 1, 2008 at 9:28 am

    Thanks for the coverage

    Paid journalism is inherently suspect as they write for their media owners who need stories that create interest in their product so they can gain readers/views and sell newspapers and ads

    Blogging news is also inherently suspect, while it may not have a direct profit motive, often it has something more suspect – an interest in pursuing its own brand of the truth.

    Having both bloggers and journalists out there gives us many points of view from which some semblance of the truth can be formed. This is certainly better than having just paid journalists covering out news.

  7. Glenn fm Naples

    September 1, 2008 at 4:53 pm

    Of course the national media spins stories to generate revenues. But how many real estate agents previously had the experience of taking a course on dealing with the press?

  8. Steve Simon

    September 2, 2008 at 5:52 am

    Until you have spent some time as an elected official you really have no idea at what depths the News Media will sink to…
    Read my profile.
    I have seen misquotes (known to be a misquote in advance of distribution) used as headlines.
    I have seen the with-holding of information that changes the entire context of a an event.
    I have seen thousands and thousands of dollars spent in one sided opposition research while major blunders of the other side are not even mentioned.
    Depending on the organization this one sided harang’s predisposed tilt is also usually predictable…

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