Missing Link Friday – Metablogging

"I arrived with fellow baboon researcher Monica yesterday night, after a fairly smooth trip starting in St. Louis and passing through Atlanta and Johannesburg." That’s primate biologist Kenneth Chiou writing about his trip to Pioneer Camp outside Lusaka. Chiou has been blogging for over a year now. In a recent post he reflects on what it means to blog under his own name:

… my name is now irreversibly tied to whatever thoughts–the insightful, the whimsical, the passionate, the comical, the brilliant, the personal, the insensitive–that I lay down on this site.

How come I’m blogging and not writing poems, asks Sara Tracey. "But then it came to me: blogging is my daily writing practice. It’s a low pressure, low stress activity that connects me with who I say I am. I am a Writer."

You’d think being paid to write about the Simpsons would be fun, writes Oliver Miller:

I could sit at home and write in my pajamas while eating take-out food; and that’s what I did. I was so grateful.

But this was part of the problem. We — by which I mean me and my fellow employees — were all so grateful. Which allowed us to ignore — or willfully overlook — certain problems. Such as the fact that AOL editors forced us to work relentless hours. Or the fact that we were paid to lie, actually instructed to lie by our bosses.

Miller’s job was to write reviews of tv shows he’d never seen based on nothing but short video clips: "… really, my job was to lie. My job was to write about random, out-of-context video clips, while pretending to the reader that I had watched the actual show in question."

In less than a year he was fired.

Tobias Buckell enjoyed working at AOL:

I wasn’t doing anything amazing, just feeding our stories to the twitter account, replying to people who took the time to talk to us, and thanking people who retweeted us. But it was slowly growing and was a personable space. It was authentic.

But then things took a turn for the worse …

Autobloggers are stealing Richard Byrne’s work. He’s not happy.

Blogging is an unsophisticated medium consumed by unsophisticated readers, writes David Berreby at Mind Matters . One reason so many readers were taken in by ‘A Gay Girl in Damascus’ is because the medium lacks "literary conventions that allow a writer to layer one meaning upon another." According Berreby, Tom MacMaster’s audience "didn’t have the hard bright lines that told them what was imaginary and what was not." So if you’re looking for why people should study literature, here it is:

If you don’t teach people how to read literature they’ll read with the expectation that writing is perfectly transparent, sincere and utilitarian. And when you read that naively, you’re an easy mark for frauds and liars.

"From blogs, to where?" asks Armagny. "How many of us want to write more, to connect with the enduring power of a novel, or even that rare poem or short story that hooks in?"

"What is the point of blogging into silence?" asks Mike Finn. "Fear not, Mike!" writes commenter Craig. "You are read!"

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9 years ago

[…]Every the moment in a though we choose blogs that we read. Listed below are the most current web pages that we choose […]