TTLB featured on CNN’s Inside Politics

TTLB was showcased on CNN’s Inside Politics yesterday: transcript is and thanks to The Political Teen, video can be seen here. The segment highlighted the new look, in particular showing off the Iraq topic page and the Milbloggers community page.
I had no idea the Inside Politics folks were planning this — kids, e-mail next time! — but it was a most pleasant surprise. And seeing TTLB up on CNN’s monitors sure made me glad that I spent much of this weekend cleaning up visual styles around these parts…

Where are the liberals?

We’re almost a week into the new launch, and one question I’ve heard asked (yes, I’m looking at you, Lisa) is “where are the liberal communities”?
We’ve got the Brotherhood; we’ve got the Raging RINOs. As of last night, we’ve even got Gunbloggers. But specifically liberal-focused communities? I got nuthin’.
It is not for lack of trying on my part. I sent my announcement post to several of the most prominent liberal bloggers, and it appears to have landed with a solid ‘thud’ in their virtual circular file. Similarly, I reached out to the Liberal Coalition, which I’ve supported over the years through the old TTLB’s ‘Alliance’ functionality, with a similar lack of effect.
It is my genuine goal to make TTLB a portal to all of the best in the blogosphere, not just the swath of it that tends to lean towards my own political views. So this is a genuine disappointment to me — but it is never too late. So if you consider yourself a leftie and have a good idea for a community: speak up!
But in the meantime: consider this a no-complaining zone for those who like to whinge about “lack of balance” in the blogosphere…
Update: Dawn Eden at the NY Daily News picked up on my call for leftie participation, and actually tracked down Kos himself to ask him what’s up with that.
It would have been cooler if she went all Michael Moore on him and showed up at his front door shoving a microphone in his face, demanding “Why are you repressing the Truth Laid Bear? What do you have to hide? Is it true you’re prejudiced against bears?”
But I suppose a polite email was a tad more professional…thanks, Dawn!

Welcome to the new Truth Laid Bear

Does something look…. different?
No, I haven’t changed my hair, but thanks for asking.
Yes, at long last, the new release of TTLB is here. As I hope will be apparent, a great deal of thought and effort has gone into this new release, which essentially amounts to a top-to-bottom redesign of the site, including oodles of new features. Things are still a bit rough around the edges, and I’m still polishing, polishing, polishing: but the fundamentals work, and it’s time to let this baby leave the nest.
Here’s a quick summary of some of the goodies you’ll find:
Posts : Summaries of the most-linked posts across the blogosphere over the past few days. The creme de la creme of bloggy goodness.
Topics: Topic pages aggregate the latest & most popular posts on specific topics. What’s hot in the blogosphere now? TTLB’s topic pages will tell you. And if the topics I’m currently tracking don’t fly your flag, you can also create your own custom topic page on whatever subject strikes your fancy.
Communities: Similar to topics pages, community pages focus on pre-defined sub-groupings of weblogs. Example communites are groups like milbloggers, or Canadian Bloggers. Each community has a community page which shows the latest & most popular posts from within the community, and a special Ecosystem-like listing which ranks the community members against each other.
UberCarnival: A directory page which shows the latest ‘carnivals’ around the blogosphere. Now you don’t ever have to worry about tracking down where the latest edition of your favorite Carnival is this week: TTLB will do it for you.
And of course, the old Ecosystem by-links and by-traffic ranking pages are still around, along with some incremental improvements to the individual blog details pages, including the display of actual blog-post titles on the ‘most popular posts’ listing as opposed to cryptic URLs.
So: take a look around, enjoy, and by all means, let me know what you think. I’m just getting started, and so, must inevitably quote Sir Winston:
“This is not the end. It is not even the beginning of the end. But it is, perhaps, the end of the beginning.”
Update: Thanks to all for the kind words and the links. One question that is coming up is “how do you select communities, and can I suggest a new one”? The answer is that the communities you see today are merely a starting point, meant to demonstrate the direction I’m taking TTLB in. I’m actively seeking suggestions on additional communities that would be useful to add, so if you’ve got one in mind, please, speak up.
And one specific note on that subject: while I have my own political views and will continue to express them on my blog page here, I try to keep the rest of TTLB nonpartisan. So I’d definitely like to add some communities and topics that would be of interest to the left side of the blogosphere. If you’ve got a suggestion, let me know!

Kerry Releases Records. Sort Of.

The Boston Globe’s Michael Kranish today that the Globe has obtained John Kerry’s “full military and medical records”, but that there is a “lack of any substantive new material about Kerry’s military career in the documents.” Michelle is roundup central and Tom Maguire provides his take.
I have a few questions — not for Kerry, but for the Globe:
1) Why hasn’t the Globe posted the full set of documents on its web site? Was there a condition on their release that they not be published in their entirety?
2) If there was a condition on their release, why isn’t that disclosed in the piece?
Kranish’s story seems like an utterly useless piece of non-journalism when viewed through the spectrum of blogger standards. The original materials exist, they are the primary (the only) relevant information conveyed by the story — but the Globe won’t let us see them. No need for you to read for yourselves, ignorant masses, we’ll just tell you what’s in them so you don’t need to worry your pretty little heads.
Unless, of course, the Globe is prohibited from this disclosure in some way, in which case they should disclose that. (And if that is the case: just how hard did the Globe argue with Kerry’s team that they should be allowed to publish the documents — and thereby invalidate their exclusive? Color me skeptical.)
Either way, this seems like the worst sort of MSM paternalism…
Update: Beldar is thinking the same thing I am