Blogroll Update & Other Blogging News

John Quiggin thinks that the left side of the blogosphere is a much more vibrant place than the right – a turnaround in John’s view from when he first started blogging. I’m in the process of updating the Troppo blogroll – and most of the blogs I plan to add are leftish or centrist ones I’ve discovered over the past few months which I enjoy reading. If anyone knows of any well written, amusing, or otherwise meritorious right wing blogs you’d like to suggest, please post a comment. Or for that matter, any well written, amusing, or otherwise meritorious left wing blogs you’d like to suggest.

You could combine this with a bit of blog criticism if you like – as pioneered on these pages by Geoff in a recent comment.

In other blogging news, Ausculture celebrates its thousandth post and first birthday. Happy birthday, Jess and Patrick!

And people might want to think about giving a paper at the Blogtalk Downunder conference at UTS in May. Abstracts are due Monday but that shouldn’t be a problem for bloggers who are used to instant writing…

About Mark Bahnisch

Mark Bahnisch is a sociologist and is the founder of this blog. He has an undergraduate degree in history and politics from UQ, and postgraduate qualifications in sociology, industrial relations and political economy from Griffith and QUT. He has recently been awarded his PhD through the Humanities Program at QUT. Mark's full bio is on this page.
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Jess
2021 years ago

Awww, thank you Mark. We’re a shoddy, haphazard patch of web but we’ve managed to not get completely bored yet and lasted out a year. Who would have thought?
Or hoped?

Evil Pundit
2021 years ago

Since John Quiggin bases this theory of his on the fact that left-wing blogs dominated the left-wing blog awards, I’m not getting worried.

Mark Bahnisch
Mark Bahnisch
2021 years ago

Actually, EP, if you read John’s post, that’s not what he based his theory on.

Evil Pundit
2021 years ago

Do I have to read the whole thing? He’s an economist, fer chrissake!

Mark Bahnisch
Mark Bahnisch
2021 years ago

At any rate, EP, read Geoff’s post below for a discussion of Swedish culture.

Evil Pundit
2021 years ago

You sent me on a wild goose chase. John’s theory is in fact based on the lefty blog awards.

It’s good to see that Geoff Honnor shares my disdain for the wildly overrated, childish MsFits and Darp.

Mark Bahnisch
Mark Bahnisch
2021 years ago

No, EP, he thinks that the awards are a reflection of a changing blogosphere – I think he’s basing his statement on personal observation.

Evil Pundit
2021 years ago

Yes, his personal observation of the awards and of the blogs he likes to read. The outcome seems inevitable — how many right wing blogs would a left-winger cultivate as regular reads?

Robert
2021 years ago

There are definitely more left-wing blogs now than there were a year or two ago. When I started blogging, I could count the Left blogs on one hand, and had over a dozen Right blogs on my daily list. But now, I’ve got about eighty Australian blogs in my bookmarks, and I’d say 3/4 of them are Leftish.

Ken Parish
Ken Parish
2021 years ago

Robert

Troppo’s blogroll currently lists 114 Australian political blogs, of which about 46 are right-leaning (in my assessment) and around 35 or so left-leaning. Mark B is in the process of adding several more left-leaning blogs, so I reckon it’s reasonable to suggest that there’s a fairly even left-right split in the ozplogosphere these day. I agree with JQ that this is a marked difference from a couple of years ago when he and I both started blogging, because the right clearly dominated at that time. But it’s a considerable overstatement to claim that the left now dominates.

TimT
2021 years ago

It’s true, the more I’ve learned about the blogosphere, the more lefty-blogs I’ve discovered, though I’m not sure whether that reflects my own perspective rather than the growth in the ‘left-wing’ blogosphere.

That being said, there are a couple of reasons why left-wing blogs have risen in popularity:

– The amount of young people becoming involved in the blogosphere (they’re generally left to far-left leaning)

– The easy availability of net access from publically funded venues, such as unis, schools, etc – encouraging the involvement of mostly left-leaning public servants (honourable exceptions include gibbosplace.blogspot.com, grindercom.blogspot.com, bundysrant.blogspot.com).

– The growth in ‘community’ funded blogs and ‘communal’ blog projects – like the ones funded over at Election Tracker – http://www.electiontracker.net. These blogs are, again, more likely to attract the left-leaning sorts.

– The related involvement of political parties in blogging – some examples: the Greens election blog, and the blogs by Meg Ryan and Andrew Bartlett, both leftish politicians.

If there ever was a right-wing bias to the blogs, then I think that reflected the sort of people who were initially likely to have access to blogging technology. ie, individualists with computer and a little time to spare, who, for whatever reason, felt dissatisfied with the old media, relying, as it does, on complicated networks of journalists, censurious editors, etc, etc, etc. In fact, I think many of the right-wing bloggers out there help to understand why the right is so healthy at the moment – relying upon a base of intelligent individualist/liberterians who have finally found a voice, not in old media, but in the one-to-one, instant-publication option available over the internet.

TimT
2021 years ago

Correction:

Instead of ” – The amount of young people becoming involved in the blogosphere (they’re generally left to far-left leaning)”

Read: ” – The amount of young people becoming involved in the blogosphere (young people are generally left to far-left leaning)”

Scott Wickstein
2021 years ago

Lots of the non-left bloggers drop out too. Gareth Parker and I used to post at a rate of knots- he’s dropped out altogether, and I’m in semi-retirement.

The early start on the Right is probably due to the fact that Tim Blair inspired so many of us.

I must admit, with Beazley back as ALP leader, I’m not likely to resume posting anytime soon. Its 1996 all over again.

John Quiggin
John Quiggin
2021 years ago

Actually, Ken, I used your blogroll as a starting point. I checked through and found that a large number of the rightwing blogs (particularly the RWDBs) were moribund or had disappeared altogether. I’d say only about 20 of your rightwing blogs are posting regularly at present.

The rough balance in your blogroll is a fair reflection of the scene a year or so ago, but there’s been a big shift since then.

Jason Soon
Jason Soon
2021 years ago

“The early start on the Right is probably due to the fact that Tim Blair inspired so many of us.”

believe it or not, my blog was originally inspired by Tim Blair, among others, before he started going downhill under the management of Commissar Harris (those were the good old days when he made fun of ‘America deserved it’ loonies rather than refugees who sewed their lips). it started a few weeks after Blair’s.

Geoff Honnor
Geoff Honnor
2021 years ago

“It’s good to see that Geoff Honnor shares my disdain for the wildly overrated, childish MsFits and Darp.”

I wouldn’t get too excited EP. They’re both very talented writers – I find Ms Fits’ self-absorption offputting and I drew a parallel between the personal narrative of Gianna – which tends to draw you in – and that of Ms Fits – which is kind of “look at moiye, look at moiye.” Mat Hau has crafted a blog persona that works very effectively. It’s just that I find it difficult to channel “shaved scrotum revolutionary” from a bloke who cranks out advertising copy for a crust. But he’ll probably go far………

Buzz
Buzz
2021 years ago

There are a lot of blogs out there that are basically personal journals but post frequently about politics. In that context, there’s probably thousands of ‘political’ blogs in Australia. Most of them we’ll never have the chance to read.

Zoe
Zoe
2021 years ago

So will there be a new category for left wing love beasts?

Kent
2021 years ago

Buzz is right. Too many excellent but infrequent bloggers don’t read other blogs – or at least don’t link to them. The linking game can seem pretty odd and self-absorbed to people ‘on the outside’. And so they never get found or read by more than a handful of people. It’s a terrible pity.

Yobbo
2021 years ago

Tim: What’s the address of Meg Ryan’s blog, and does she have pics?

Darlene
2021 years ago

Shouldn’t that be left wing life beasts?

The old left/right divide is certained embraced on blogs.

Don’t knock Ms Harris by the way, she is the Queen Bee.

Can’t claim to have merit, write well or be amusing (“two Irish blokes walked…), but I have a blog nonetheless.

TimT
2021 years ago

D’oh! I meant Meg Lees, obviously! I must be getting old…

Nabakov
Nabakov
2021 years ago

“The old left/right divide is certained embraced on blogs.”

On some blogs. There’s millions of others out there talking about everything from Linux hacks to Jennifer Love Hewitt and/or care adn feeding of goldfish.

“Don’t knock Ms Harris by the way, she is the Queen Bee.”

Only within her little hive. And once her main honey producer, little tim moves on (as he will) she’ll just be vene more of a bitter blog baglady. Talk about remoras.

“Can’t claim to have merit, write well or be amusing (“two Irish blokes walked…), but I have a blog nonetheless.”

So why the hell do you blog? For attention? To meet hot bloggers? To tell the world you exist? If it’s for fun and to share yaks and yoicks with others, then lift yer bloody game, darling.

Mark Bahnisch
Mark Bahnisch
2021 years ago

That’s a bit harsh, Nabs – Darlene’s blog is well worth reading. I think she’s just being modest…

Mark Bahnisch
Mark Bahnisch
2021 years ago

I like MsFits but find Darp a bit self-absorbed. But it’s all a matter of personal taste, I suppose…

Nabakov
Nabakov
2021 years ago

Maybe yer right Mark about Darlene, Perhaps you can point some examples of what makes her stand out from a million other blogs?

Darlene
2021 years ago

Sheesh, Nababov is a bit uptight. Unless he is joking like I was. Hmmmm, maybe not.

I was referring to political blogs actually. You know the ones that talk about politics.

Thanks anyway, lovey. Appreciate the advice.

Thanks to Mark for saying I am “well worth reading”. I will cease being modest now and say I bloody well agree.

Darlene
2021 years ago

By the way, hot bloggers?

Is this a species that actually exists?

Nabakov
Nabakov
2021 years ago

Oh yes hot bloggers exist Darlene. Yer affiliated with one. Mike Jericho.

I mean he’s a war hero with fancy facial hair and all. Why not ask him about his time as an “Australian special forces veteran of East Timor, Afghanistan and Iraq”?

And if yer were referring to political blogs why didn’t you say so at first? ‘specially since this thread had already raised the point that not all blogs are political.

You’ll thank me for this rigour one day.

Darlene
2021 years ago

Fair call, Nabakov. And rigour is good. Just don’t call me darling, sweetheart.

Well this is not the first time someone has brought up Mike Jericho. Although the last time the word fascist came up. Sigh!

Have no problem with the general intent of Mike’s blog, nor would I criticise his service record.

Consider myself fairly centrist politically, thus it has been interesting to find myself presumed to be a RWDB, a Nazi and god knows what else. Oh well, you roll with it.

Nabakov
Nabakov
2021 years ago

“…norwould I criticise his service record.”

What service record?

Down and out in Saigon
2021 years ago

I can’t call myself a political blogger. Some subjects would get you a one-way plane ticket out of the country. (It’s quicker than a trial, and with less international uproar to boot.) Still, “Why more left bloggers that right?” is safe enough. Let’s break it down.

1. Firstly, we are talking about political blogs. Not those concerned with fluffy kittens or real estate.

2. So what inspires people to blog, apart from the mendacity and incompetence of the government(s) of the day? Which is pretty much any government. However, some excel themselves, and even get themselves into wars that kill lots of people.

3. Other people may find themselves politically aligned. Or they loathe the opposition. Or they like kicking people when they are down. This not bring in as many punters as those in step 2. Most people want David to win, not Goliath.

4. Often the same people as in 3 like to blame the government BEFORE this one. But this makes them seem out of touch or obscelescent. Especially if that government has been out of power for more than four years.

5. Finally, other people are generally inspired to blog by people like themselves. So if step 2 is happening, then there’s more feedback to exacerbate this.

I think all of you are smart enough to fill in the blanks in this Year of our Lord 2005. And how things may have turned out if blogging kicked in 10 years earlier. I want to add a personal slant:

6. I find most RWDBs unreadable.

It’s true that the first group of bloggers were more right than left. The first blog I ever read only ceased publishing in the last two months: U.S.S. Clueless. (The title was meant to be ironic.) While never a RWDB, he was definitely a warblogger. But it was people like Road to Surfdom and Catallaxy that inspired me to blog.

Mark Bahnisch
Mark Bahnisch
2021 years ago

I think TimT is probably right, and JQ alludes to this too – it’s the sociology of who’s using the net. To start off with, it was a bit of an IT nerd libertarian boy zone. I discovered the internet thingomebob in 93. It was horrendously exciting to be able to read the Village Voice online!

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14 years ago

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