24 October 2008

Blogging Reduced to Stems and Seeds by Wired

The Unstoppable Twitter/Facebook Behometh To Squash Blogging (pic from Contra Tribute Page)

An article in this month's Wired (h/t Milblogging.com) proclaims the death of blogging in lieu of the new social networking sites that all the young whippersnappers are using (e.g. Facebook, Twitter):
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.
Call me the old-fashioned coot who still drives around in a 1984 Buick yelling at speeding high schoolers to slow it down, but Facebook is too exclusive with its "be my friend" policy to have any sort of commentary reach beyond your clique of like-minded pals. And Twitter just sucks, with even good writers like Patrick Ruffini not getting substance beyond "ZOMG! Palin's New Shoes Are Teh Awesome" due to Twitter's brevity requirements (less than 140 words).

Wired goes on to state that all the big, "professional" blogs are sucking up all the space for google searches. But just this week, this piece of shit bleg with a pagerank of 5, got on the first google search page for "Mongols MC" due to a post about the ATF raids in California and received hundreds of hits. So covering a unique topic besides Obama's electoral status and "Rethuglicans being Meanies" might get you all sorts of traffic from unexpected nether regions of the net.

Also, Wired discusses the troll factor as hurting some of the more sensitive bloggers' precious feelings:
That said, your blog will still draw the Net's lowest form of life:The insult commenter. Pour your heart out in a post, and some anonymous troll named r0rschach or foohack is sure to scribble beneath it, "Lame. Why don't you just suck McCain's ass." That's why Calacanis has retreated to a private mailing list. He can talk to his fans directly, without having to suffer idiotic retorts from anonymous Jason-haters.
Grow up, you wuss. The more psychotic trolls are generally pretty damn hilarious, and if your post is getting a lot of negative feedback, it was probably a shitty post to begin with. Accept criticism and do better next time or pack your bags for the turnip truck with all the other schmucks twittering away no-substance garbage for their BFFs.

Blogs were never as well-written and professional as the mainstream media, and the whole "citizen-journalist" moniker might be a bit overwrought in its self-importance. But bloggin' is still an interesting way to share commentary from average schmoes that is framed in a semi-professional manner with lots of links so that the reader can draw their own opinion. Kind of like "Letters to the Editor", but with embedded videos and pics of politicians making an ass of themselves for better effect. The comments are also a lot more insightful, as strange internet people like myself stake their cyber-reputation on their handle when explaining why strippers are necessary for pulling out of the econmic crisis. So, if you are a blogger or commenter or lurker, don't give up hope just yet! Let's at least hold out until the net neutrality laws round us up for "re-education" in the next administration.