A fair summary of blogs?
Peter Hartlaub, Pop Culture Critic at The San Francisco Chronicle, writes today of the blogging phenomenon at the Democratic convention and, surprisingly, concludes that “for several moments in four days of sleepless and often stream-of-consciousness coverage, the collection of mostly young writers ably explained their existence — while raising questions about the established media’s ability to stay in touch with readers, viewers and listeners”.
Quite positive, but I’m not crazy about the other things he says. He seems to think the only valuable blogs are political: “Every Web log hosted by a good writer who can type an interesting account of their day (such as Wilwheaton.net) is matched by 100 that constantly hit up readers for money, link any article that predicts a bright future for Web logs and name-drop other sites that do the same thing. Yes, most bloggers blog about blogs. But the political bloggers, as a breed, are a more focused group.”
Hmmm. Are the rest of us interested only in perpetuating our species? I doubt it somehow. It’s the typical perspective of mainstream media, I suspect (of which I’m still a member, I guess). Turn it around: Judging blogging by the most inane, self-absorbed blogs you come across is a bit like judging the mainstream media from a selective reading of family newsletters, parish fliers, smalltown rags and Fox. Blogging covers every conceivable topic, and unlike academia and localized publications, breaks out of any geographical or generic boundary. Political bloggers may be more focused, but where’s the serendipity in that? OK, so not all bloggers are Renaissance figures but I can think of quite a few who are. Blogging breaks more molds than we give it credit for.
OK, I’m waxing again. I’ll stop.