Blogging Blast from a Neighboring Galaxy

There is a fascinating article in tomorrows
(todays) Washington Post about blogging. The author, Jennifer Howard,
launches into a savage attack on the phenomenon, as though she feels
somehow betrayed by her growing addiction to the blogopshere:

What began as the ultimate outsider activity — a way to break the newspaper
and TV stranglehold on the gathering and dissemination of information
— is turning into the same insider’s game played by the old establishment
media the bloggerati love to critique. The more blogs you read and
the more often you read them, the more obvious it is: They’ve fallen
in love with themselves, each other and the beauty of what they’re
creating. The cult of media celebrity hasn’t been broken by the Internet’s
democratic tendencies; it’s just found new enabling technology.

The really interesting part is that she then goes into
a detailed analysis of an entire constellation of blogs that I never
knew existed. She talks about them as if they are the center of
the blogging universe. As I guess she is a literary critic, they all
to be by and about writers and literature.

I am starting to think of the blogosphere like a rapidly
expanding universe, composed of unimaginable numbers of galaxies, each
in turn composed of a handful of brilliant stars and who knows how many
gravitationally affiliated lesser luminaries.

In my own local galaxy the signature stars are Winer
and Reynolds and Lessig and Doctrow. We tend to see our own galaxies
as the center of the blogging universe, but who can count the galaxies?
The amazing thing about the Blogging universe is that we can visit these
other galaxies whenever we want, with or without a guide, and bring things
we learn back to our own local star systems.

from the Washington Post

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2 Responses to Blogging Blast from a Neighboring Galaxy

  1. Seth Finkelstein says:

    I didn’t get the idea that she thought the blogs she read were all of bloggerdom – rather, she was using her interests as a case study:

    “Take my daily blog circuit. It’s heavy on sites with a literary slant, but the same tendencies crop up on blogs that focus on politics or almost any other subject.”

    It’s the same democracy-in-theory/insider-oligarchy-in-practice “power law” phenomena.

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