Miami New Times cover story is going to be a doozy as we dive into the lives of Miami's most hated bloggers -- by the local political establishment, that is. These digital gadflies are filling the civic investigative void created by the cuts at The Miami Herald and other local media outlets. You'll find out that some of them have had a few run-ins with the law, while others are richer than some of the very politicians and public officials they harass. Tomorrow, you can read our full feature on Miami's top ten political bloggers.
But first, we wanted to recognize ten other blogs that deserve honorable mention for the public service they provide. While they don't aggressively confront subjects like our top ten picks, these bloggers still make time to criticize boneheaded decisions by local government
and shine a light on the ugly side of political candidates.
Bark Bark Woof Woof
Started in 2003 by a moderate-to-liberal gay man with a background in theater, Bark Bark Woof Woof puts a farcical spin on right-wing conservative values and candidates. The author operates under the nom de plume "Mustang Bobby" and calls the bullshit streaming out of GOP presidential contenders.
Launched in 2010 by former Miami SunPost reporter and freelance journalist Jordan Melnick, this is one of the leading local blogs on cultural criticism. Melnick has criticized the decision to rename the Miami Art Museum after real estate developer Jorge Perez, and Malaysian company Genting's plan for a megacasino.
Belle Isle Blog
Run by a group of anonymous authors who reside in a condo at 9 Island Ave. on Belle Isle in Miami Beach, this blog keeps track of the city's public works projects in the neighborhood. The blog has been instrumental in improving the service of a local bus shuttle in South Beach.
Blogging Black Miami
Former Miami-Dade school board administrator Vanessa Woodard Byers provides insightful commentary on issues African-Americans are wary to talk about, such as the hazing death of Florida A&M University drum major Robert Champion and discrimination against gays. "No matter how tolerant many people have become, a masculine lesbian would be more accepted than a gay male," she wrote. "Such is the nature of our culture today."
Coconut Grove Grapevine
Six years ago, Tom Falco launched his blog to keep fellow Grove residents informed about a controversial Home Depot project. He's still so good that Commissioner Marc Sarnoff sued him -- a badge of honor for any citizen blogger.
The Cuban Triangle
Phil Peters is the only blogger in Miami reporting on the Cuban economy, providing almost daily updates on important developments such as the state government's recent decision to allow carpenters, photographers, repairmen, and locksmiths to become private entrepreneurs.
The Reid Report
A Harvard graduate who started her career working on local TV news stations and radio programs, Joy Ann Reid has been tormenting Republicans since 2005. Reid's prolific blogging about national politics has earned her guest columns in the Miami Herald, the Sun-Sentinel, and Salon, as well as guest-hosting gigs for WLRN-FM's The Florida Roundup show. Last year, she moderated a county mayoral debate for the NAACP. She was also the first to bust Manjarres for making dough from political campaigns.
A coalition of a dozen residents operates this blog as a way to disseminate information about the antics of the town council and its ethically challenged town attorney, Lynn Dannheisser. In 2010, the blog broke the story of how Dannheisser, who makes more than $177,000 a year, persuaded the council to hire her boyfriend, Gerald Houlihan, for additional legal representation.
Southern District of Florida Blog
Since he began blogging in 2005, criminal trial lawyer David O. Markus has become the definitive source on South Florida's federal court system, reporting and opining on judicial appointments to high-profile cases.
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Founded in 2006 by urban planner Gabriel Lopez-Bernal and edited by Tony Garcia, Transit Miami is the leading critical voice on county transportation issues.