November 14, 2003

Karl and The Register on Blogging and Bloggers

As usual, Karl is dishing out more than word soup. He hits on the reality of blogging in a post that's partly a response to Dave Winer and Kasia (as cited in The Register) and that contains such gems as:

Bloggers are people who like to hear themselves talk (I'm included), filled with an inaccurate sense of importance (probably included here too), contributing to little more than white noise in a sea of screaming brains, wired together with fiber and glue. (My grammar teacher would beat me senseless for that run on sentence, but as a self-important blogger its my prerogative)
That's blogging.
In and of itself, that's fine with me. Scream, punch, kick, do whatever you want while you're alive. But let's not pretend we're curing cancer by contributing more static to the noise pool.
It's not that individuals, or a group of outraged individuals can't make a difference, either. It just seems to me that most of the blogging community chooses to channel their collective brainpower and voice into unimportant crap.

And, later on...

I'm FAR MORE impressed every time some poor rural girls lemonade stand gets shut down by an over-zealous town mayor; the web then writing en masse and making the city/town back down. I've seen at least three of these stories this year. Humans helping humans.

Of course, we've all seen stuff like that in blogs, but Karl's point is that it tends to be the exception rather than the rule.

Your Blog versus Verizon's lobbyists. Good fucking luck.


It's good to see that Andrew Orlowski of The Register has his head on semi-straight. I love the first paragraph of that story:

Working in his secret laboratory at Harvard University, a Fellow of the prestigious institution has come up with a formula that rocks electoral maths to its core.

Don't get me wrong, blogging is important. But it's not that important and not in the ways that some would like you to believe.

That reminds me. Now would be a good time to recommend that everyone pick up and read a copy of Asking The Right Questions, which happens to be written by two of BGSU's smartest professors. It's a seriously good book that's used in their critical thinking classes. It's been a few years since I read it, so I probably should dust off my copy too. I think a lot of the "debate" (including much of the political discussion) I see in the blogsphere could benefit from it.

Posted by jzawodn at 04:23 PM