On blogging

A Million Nation States of One fears Google Balkanization | The Register: “There’s a case to be made for Weblogs as the most anti-social software yet devised. No wonder they’re so popular with egotists, as the right to speech without consequences reaches its apogee on the web soap box. Compared to bulletin boards, or group discussions, there’s no one to temper the conversation, or steer it to more useful outcomes. There is a lot of posturing, however, in this fragmented world of a Million Nation States of One. And as anyone who has tried to follow ‘the conversation’ across dozens of fragments can confirm, it’s the antithesis of coherent discussion. “

In a way that’s quite true. I’m not talking about my blog, which is a collection of links, news, photos and diary-like posts. Blogs tend to be only read by people who people who agree or are interested in the content. At least those people are more likely to come back more than once. The internet is too vast to spend time on a site that offends your point of view. So bloggers to tend to live in a vaccuum of reasoned criticism and discussion.

Even the discussion of blogging is going to be tainted. The only people who will read these words are people who are familiar with blogging, have blogs and post to them. And so we follow the trend of techno-utopianism (blergh!) where we all end up wanking over ourselves, cut off from the rest of reality.

So why do I blog? Why am I being such a hypocrite? Why do I post more now in a standalone blog than when I had one that was part of a larger community? I’m not really sure to be honest. I do enjoy putting my thoughts down and sending them off into the Worldwide InterWeb, where billions of net users won’t read it. Where my friends will read what I would tell them in person anyway.

Yes, it’s perverse, no it doesn’t make any sense, but as long as I remember that, I should be okay.