During last week's heavy editorial meeting, (which we documented in "Mello Sunday: Another BFP Staff Meeting…") we set some goals about doing the following stories…
– Part II of our Graeme Hall Nature Sanctuary series.
– A look at the PEP, BLP & DLP websites.
– Part I on a series about Bajan money.
– Florida Police Corruption Scandal Touches Royal Barbados Police Force
– Commentary on Gay Marriage in Barbados
While we managed to bring you a few of these stories, our publishing schedule was taken over by events. (See "The Power Of The Internet – In Barbados Politics" below)
We feel most badly about having missed the Graeme Hall Nature Sanctuary story – which we will try to complete this week.
Graeme Hall Wetlands In Danger
There is a community meeting on (I think) June 7th to discuss the impact of a proposal by Caribbean Splash Inc. to put a tourist water park in Graeme Hall wetland area. As a runup to the meeting, we will continue with our series on this important issue. For details, see our earlier story "Barbados Water Park Battle On The Horizon – Graeme Hall Wetlands In Danger"
The Power Of The Internet – In Barbados Politics
One story emerged to dominate the Barbados Free Press for the past week – the new influence and power of the internet in Barbados politics. On May 25th, we published "Barbados Political Party Websites Reviewed – A Choice Between BLP Racism and Nothing Else"… and saw the number of visitors and people leaving comments go off the scale.
Two days later, we reviewed the new Barbados Labour Party Blog in our story "Barbados Labour Party Blog Reviewed – Linked To" and again the visitor log went off the scale.
We also provided permanent links to the BLP Blog at the written request of Dr. William Duguid: MP and General Secretary of the Barbados Labour Party. Dr. Duguid has been a frequent visitor and commentor at the Barbados Free Press since we published "Standup Comedians Supreme!" on April 26th.
The Barbados Labour Party Blog was established by Dr. Duguid about May 7, 2006, and several bloggers started talking about the importance of this event – including Titilayo from the Bajan blog Gallimaufry, who also received a visits and comments from Dr. Duguid.
On May 29th, former lawyer/chief counsel turned full-time journalist & editor Karen Walrond said of the establishment of the Barbados Labour Party Blog…
"In my opinion, this is huge."
Today, Barbados Free Press received enquiries from two major media organizations – in the United Kingdom and the USA – who are apparently developing stories concerning the BLP Blog and the rising impact of blogging in Caribbean politics.
We also saw major media stories this week concerning a United States Appeal Court ruling that bloggers are protected by law the same as journalists are – and a story that internet advertising revenues will exceed newspaper advertising revenues by 2007.
Power and media structures are shifting. Barbados Free Press will continue to cover the story surrounding the new importance and influence of political blogging.