Tuesday, October 21st, 2008
Paul Boutin writes
Writing a weblog today isn’t the bright idea it was four years ago. The blogosphere, once a freshwater oasis of folksy self-expression and clever thought, has been flooded by a tsunami of paid bilge. Cut-rate journalists and underground marketing campaigns now drown out the authentic voices of amateur wordsmiths. It’s almost impossible to get noticed, except by hecklers. And why bother? The time it takes to craft sharp, witty blog prose is better spent expressing yourself on Flickr, Facebook, or Twitter.
I disagree with Boutin on the entirety. Consider the logic: If the blogosphere (here cast as a monoculture) has been “flooded by . . . bilge” then this does not mean that the oases have disappeared. Have the “authentic voices” been drowned out, or has the blogosphere sprung lots of different “authenticities” (polyculture)? As to the last sentence: why? Is or has the objective been to get noticed?
Sure, you can get noticed, but you can also gather a few readers, just as you would a few friends, and keep truckin’. What’s wrong with that? I don’t have a lot of readers but I love the readers and writers who do come by.
Boutin’s is a corruption argument. But people are writing and reading weblogs. The culture will evolve and change, as will Facebook. Good text-based weblogs will continue with people who love to write and read. And, by the way, is it easier to load video onto YouTube than write into a weblog? Hm, where do I get the video?
Thanks to Susan for the link.
P.S. Why can’t the same argument be made against writing of poetry, fiction, or non-fiction?