Today’s NYTimes and Wall Street Journal both have front page stories about Google‘s possible aquisition of video hosting service YouTube for $1.6B (yes billion).

If it comes to pass, that’s a big story. Amazing really. YouTube launched less than a year ago as a way for folks to upload and share videos online. Today about 50 million people worldwide are using the site. And 100 million video clips are being watched everyday.

A couple of my favorites:

Chevy Tahoe spoof ad

Dell’s exploding laptop

The real story is TechCrunch (which broke the news)

But the real story here (what I’m calling the inflection point) is that both the Times and the Journal got the story from a Top 100 blog (#10 on Technorati), Michael Arrington‘s TechCrunch AND both papers credit TechCrunch as a source.

Michael’s Oct. 6th entry had a blog-style title: Completely Unsubstantiated YouTube Rumor. Within hours, the Times had jumped on the story with an oh-so-serious headline: Google In Talks to Acquire YouTube for $1.6B.

I don’t know if this is the first time that mainstream media (MSM) has acknowledged a blog in quite the same way as a source for a big story. (This would be Google’s biggest acquisition and the highest-dollar acquisition of an Internet company since the dot bomb of 2000.)

But it’s the first time I’ve noticed it — or really thought about it.

There’s something fascinating going on here. The line is beginning to blur between influential blogs and MSM. Will we look back five years from now and say, “oh yeah… of course?”

If you have any lingering doubt about blogs as a media, marketing and communications phenomenon that’s not going away, they (your doubts) should be dwindling by now. Dontcha think?