Sunday, April 23, 2006

Rebuttal Published

From the Daily Record:

Blogger's identity was never a secret
BY JAMES BEDNAR

Most of the participants at the NNJBubble Web site know my "nom de plume," which is Grim.

I am also known as James Bednar, author and host of the Northern New Jersey Real Estate Bubble Blog (http://nnjbubble.blogspot.com).

A blog is simply an online diary, a Web site where visitors can read, discuss and contribute to issues of the day.

Blogging is, and always has been, about open and free communication.

Each day relevant news, statistics and information regarding New Jersey real estate is posted to the NNJBubble Web site.

Recently the blog has been the source of some disagreement concerning:

• The existence of a real estate bubble in New Jersey.

• The wisdom, or lack thereof, of real estate investment at this time.

• Possible media bias in reporting the condition of the New Jersey real estate market.

Additionally, accusations of a more personal nature have been made concerning the anonymity of the author of the Web site and selective editing of the content of the Web site.

The blog's position is that the existence of a real estate bubble in New Jersey is factual; real estate values have detached from traditional fundamentals and are currently being driven by pure speculation. Due to the speculative nature of the real estate market at this time, especially with regards to inflated prices, "What goes up must come down."

The position of the Web site is that now might not be the most advantageous time to acquire residential real estate.

In short, we believe the bubble will burst.

The above topics have been and are open to discussion, debate and opinion on NNJBubble.

The Web site attempts to foster open discussion on all sides of these issues, whether or not presented positions agree with the personal assessments of the author.

At NNJBubble we recognize the hazard of repeated reference to the same authority when voicing opinions. We do encourage reference to a variety of opinions when views are offered. In this way we attempt to monitor the fairness in the reporting of the real estate market in the state of New Jersey.

With respect to anonymity, the name James Bednar has always been associated with the handle "Grim." Both the handle and the name have appeared in print in various publications and online at Business Week, and the name James Bednar does appear on the NNJBubble Web site.

Given the above exposure of "James Bednar" and the handle "Grim," it is difficult to explain how one could draw the conclusion that the author attempts to be anonymous.

It is clearly not the case that statements made by Warren Boroson in a recent Daily Record column have been selectively edited or removed from the NNJBubble Web site.

Taking editorial liberties with the contributions of the participants of the Web site has never been the policy or practice of the author.

Any and all are welcome to search the site not only for their own comments, but also for the comments of others.

Accordingly, Boroson's comments are available on the Web site, in full and unedited, along with my greeting to him for having joined the discussion.

This is not the first time that the NNJBubble Web site has inspired controversy.

And it is certainly hoped that NNJBubble will continue to grow and attract many more participants to the debate.

But never have the arguments been conducted, nor will they be conducted in the future, with anything other than the character of cooperation.

With this proviso understood, we all await Boroson's return to our forum to further enliven the dialogue.


Also published was one of the emails:

Blogging story not accurate

A recent column by Warren Boroson concerning a blogger in northern New Jersey has several misstatements and needs to be rectified. First, he states that the blogger is anonymous, which is patently untrue. His name is on the main page of the blog, James Bednar. Secondly, Boroson accuses Bednar of deleting his comments. It is also not true to my knowledge. If something is deleted, it still remains as a "deleted by administrator" place mark. I myself frequent the blog daily because it provides a counterpoint to most of the real estate news you find out there, which up until recently has been only positively spun.

16 Comments:

Blogger Metroplexual said...

Grim,

They printed all of that? That is good advertising for your site imo. BTW, you write very well.

4/23/2006 08:34:00 AM  
Anonymous Mar Mar said...

I don't think Boroson is coming back........hahahahahaha

4/23/2006 09:14:00 AM  
Blogger Roadtripboy said...

Score one for us! Great letter, Grim. And kudos to this paper for it's commitment to fairness.

However, what's wrong with journalism when we have to go to them to make sure the entire story gets covered?? Does anyone else see a problem here? It seems that journalists do very little of their own research anymore.

4/23/2006 10:01:00 AM  
Blogger njresident286 said...

That was an awesome, intelligent, well written rebuttle. It was not an attack but a perfect example of how to get your point across. Amazing job as usual.

4/23/2006 10:01:00 AM  
Anonymous Trish said...

Hi Grim,

I LOVE your blog and have commented several times. Boroson is a public figure who has "professional" knowledge of the real estate situation in Northern New Jersey. Why shouldn't he be subject to discussion, discourse and analysis? Talking heads SHOULD be held accountable for their rhetoric. I usually like how Boroson writes, except for the snarky bits which make him sound a bit whiny.

Your blog is invaluable in that it teaches the layman to question Realtor spin masking as "common knowledge" and dig deeper into comparables and property tax issues (objective factual knowledge) when bidding on a home. How can knowledge and education be a bad thing? If I have specialized knowledge of circumstances in my home town that I know will devalue someone's potential property purchase, I feel that I have an obligation to inform them of the situation. People need to have their eyes opened when making such a large purchase and most brokers will lie like dogs just to obtain a commission (I speak from experience). I like the discourse found in this blog. I may not agree with everything anyone says, but it's a good forum in which to say it. Thanks for the blog!

Regs,
Trish

4/23/2006 11:34:00 AM  
Anonymous UnRealtor said...

Kudos to the Daily Record for printing your letter.

4/23/2006 03:52:00 PM  
Anonymous Rich In NorthNJ said...

Kudos to the Daily Record for printing your letter.

Second.

And that was a fantastic “letter to the editor”. Concise and to the point, as all journalism should be.

4/23/2006 09:06:00 PM  
Blogger Marinite said...

I'm impressed that they published your letter. When our local rag (the Marin Independent Journal) was publishing reader's attacks on of my blog, they refused to publish my rebuttal letter which was in the same spirit as yours. One can only wish that more local papers were like the Daily Record in this respect.

4/24/2006 11:59:00 AM  
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6/20/2006 12:49:00 PM  
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6/21/2006 09:39:00 AM  
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