Bloggers gained some credibility recently when judicial officials agreed to set aside for bloggers two of the media seats at Lewis "Scooter" Libby's trial. Read the whole story at The Washington Post. And thanks to D.C. lawyer Scott Gant for sending the link. Gant is the author of the forthcoming book on bloggers "We're All Journalists Now." I interviewed him for a January State Legislatures magazine article about whether bloggers should get press passes to cover state legislatures.
At press time, Texas, California and Tennessee were about to be faced with the question of whether to grant a blogger press credentials.
Tennessee has since said yes. Martin Kennedy, an economics professor at Middle Tennessee State University who blogs at Legislative Report, says he is a "proud member of the Plaza Press Corps." So he might be the first blogger to have press credentials in a legislature. But it's really not that difficult in Tennessee. You just have to rent space in the Capitol.
Stay tuned for updates on California and Texas as they become available. We'd also love to know if there's movement on this issue in other states.
While we're on the subject, listen to Washington Post columnist David Broder's take on blogs, (3 minutes) recorded during a meeting of legislative communicators in D.C. in October. (Preview: He's not a big fan of them.)