I think it is interesting and laudable that several exclusively on-line news sources like Wired News and Salon have taken the Indymedia movement seriously as a journalistic enterprise, rather than just ignoring it or treating it like a fringe movement. While I’d certainly place these two organizations firmly within the realm of the mainstream media–their operating principles are essentially the same–it seems like some of the open and libertarian ideologies that permeate the hard-core Internet community also take root there. There seems to be an affinity for the independent and some disdain for the monopoly.
Of course, one has to recognize that while they are mainstream they are nonetheless niche or fringe mainstream — they don’t reach an audience of the type or size of CNN. Arguably they reach the congnocenti or digerati, not the average media consumer. CNN’s blocking behavior demonstrates clearly the hostility and suspicion with which mainstream media and journalism views the idea of placing open publishing tools in the hands of citizen-journalists. Unfortunately, that behavior does mean that the message of its very existence is blocked from many people who might be enlighted and enlivened by it.