The Toronto Snot: TorStar says:
Out of the hundreds of thousands of blogs out there, most are a self-indulgent waste of time. A few are worthwhile.
[via Blog Herald]
Exactly the same thing is true of NYT op-eds.
It’s called Sturgeon’s Law.
BS…nearly ALL are very interesting…especially since they express an author’s truly personal interpretation of the events of their life and times. Boswell’s diary, Peyps, etc. These personal, idiosyncratic diarists chronicling quotidian experiences were once thought to be pedestrian observers of their time, now they are highly prized specifically for those very reasons. They may not have been particularly literary or insightful, but seeing their world through these middlebrow eyes gives us a view of the ordinary world (and the ordinary mind of the times) that would have been lost otherwise. Think Harvey Pekar in “American Splendor” or his comics.
Like just about anything else, I would say that about half of the weblogs out there are below average. There are some very good, very well-written blogs, of course. But there’s also a lot of crap. Every time I read someone making generalizations about blogs, I find they are partially right, and mostly wrong.
Wild-assed theory: I think you’ll find that the author’s opinion of blogs matches quite nicely with his/her opinion of people in general. People who think very little of the unwashed masses aren’t likely to appreciate blogs, which are usually some sort of extension of the purveyors personalities.
Not that I’ve ever denied that my own blog is a self-indulgent waste of time…
Jeff, you are one of the interesting ones…
You’re just sore because your blog is one of the tedious waste-of-time ones.
A washed up conventional media person desperately trying to stand out in the twilight of his career (and most likely his lifespan)
Due to tv watching for so many years, a lot of Americans lost the ability to conduct a coherent conversation. Many people are out of practice.
I do agree with the first comment.
And the point would be?
Diaries are a self-indulgent waste of time, yet that’s no reason not to keep one. Blogs are a great marketplace of ideas – and they’re all important to their authors. That’s enough.
Mine’s mostly a set of links I don’t want to forget with minimal commentary. Sort of a giant Post-It note. It serves its purpose for me. I don’t care if anyone else finds it valuable.
This just in (from Canada:
“Out of the hundreds of thousands of writers out there, most are a self-indulgent waste of time. A few are worthwhile.”
This article is spot on. Most of the blogs out there have no original opinions to offer. They only exist to parrot what others have said.
Even when a blogger does come up with an original opinion to blog about, they end up turning it into an obsession by constantly posting about it, even though there isn’t really any significant amount of new information to justify another posting.
I agree with Robert in toto. I have no original opinion. :/)
Seems someone points to somone else saying blogs are mostly ego-driven timewasters about once a week. Yawn. Why do these stories provoke apoplexy?
Blogs are a new way to publish. That’s neat, but that’s all. Parking your stuff on the web won’t make it read any better.
On the other hand, you can publish — ego-driven or not — without running a gauntlet of marketeers, editors and such. That’s important.
Beyond that, give it a rest.
Fascinating and falsifiable.
Surveying all hundreds of thousands of blogs is surely out of the question–even for the omniscent TorStar.
But they should back this assertion by taking several random samples of a few hundred or so blogs, counting the proportion of blogs that are self-indulgent wastes of time. Done properly, this method will give a statistically valid results.
Shouldn’t TorStar conduct such a study before making such a wide statement?
“Even when a blogger does come up with an original opinion to blog about, they end up turning it into an obsession by constantly posting about it, even though there isn’t really any significant amount of new information to justify another posting.'”
And this is different from the majority of professional op-ed writers how?
The same is true for poetry, art, garage bands, golf, etc. Most people who do these things are not especially good, nor do they ever achieve renown for them, but nonetheless, for their own self-indulgent reasons, they waste their time on these things, and, for the most part, are better people for it.
“Most everything is crap.”
People say this all the time, about everything. Even those who are intelligent enough to realize that this does not absolve their own efforts still say it. It’s no more than mental farting or burping; pay it no mind. At least we aren’t stuck in an elevator with this one.
Jim, others have ignored you. They’re smarter than I am, no doubt, but on behalf of Jeff, let me be the first to tell you to [FCC censored] off, you vicious, arrogant little [FCC censored].
(FCC interventions in tribute to Howard and Jeff. But watch out for those new fines, man, they’ll kill ya!)
Since I spotted Carson Fire here the other day and was just thrilled to death to see one of the guys who inspired me to do comics online, I’ll mention that the same blanket statement is true of webcomics as well as weblogs.
But just because there’s a lot of crap out there doesn’t make the good ones any less valuable. And there’s nothing wrong with being self-indulgent about either.
This opinion has been expressed many times before in the trdaitional press, after the writer tries to do a story on blogging and can’t grasp the spirit or magnitude of the blogosphere. The blogosphere reverses the traditional flow of information.
Traditional flow = press -> public;
Blogs = information is fed to the press by the blogosphere.
[source- http://journalism.nyu.edu/pubzone/weblogs/pressthink/2004/03/08/weblog_demos.html “ten things radical about the weblog form in journalism”]
Please appreciate the elegant comments from “mrsizer” above.
” …they’re all important to their authors. That’s enough.”
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