Monday, October 11, 2004

CHASING THE BLOGERATI


I was listening to NPR's Fresh Air the other day and they had on a solid panel discussion with Dan Rather, Peter Jennings and Tom Brokaw. There's one thing Jennings said that echoed a similar sentiment I heard on an excellent Forum airing on journalism a few weeks back: one of the main changes that blogging has wrought on how our society manages information is to challenge the bureaucratic, chain-of-command that characterizes traditional news sources: newspapers, network, etc.

This is not a new observation but it does strike me that mainstream media has only recently been acknowledging this challenge to their traditional systems. Blogging - for many understandable reasons - has been treated as a fad, a cute human interest or technology story, but bloggers are still treated as mavericks and crackpots. Suddenly though, those mavericks and crackpots managed to embarass CBS News and I doubt this will be the first time.


On the flipside, the blogosphere works by a strange logic at times.

Recently, I decided to slim down my blog roll by removing sites that I wasn't reading that much. I probably took down about a dozen sites and it was nothing personal. Some of them were more personal diary blogs that I just don't have time for, others were news-oriented sites that were mainly duplicating information I was reading elsewhere, etc. etc.

As it turned out, one blogger whose site I took down thought I was dissing him. That couldn't be further from the truth. I've actually enjoyed his acerbic comments and I like the fact that he's a contrarian, willing to rile things up. Alas, because I removed his site from my blog roll "without offering any kind of warning or explanation" (in his words), he took this as an act of war and responded by listing Pop Life is in his blog roll under "Gay Chinks".

Anyways, this is already pretty damn funny but what's really hilarious is that people who read both our sites suddenly thought there was a big blog battle brewing so they began to create posts about this supposed "beef". One person, god bless him, even went as far to surmise that I had taken down this particular site as some kind of political statement and he gave me props for taking a "stand." Don't get me wrong: I'm flattered, but all I was doing was a little house cleaning, not grand standing.

And there you have it - a blog battle (if you can call a one way hate-fest "a battle") springs up out of thin air and will burn itself out as quickly as it takes the posting to cycle off the index page. The whole affair is plainly absurd but that's blogging for you.

(By the way, speaking of blogging, J-Shep drops a pretty damn fine policy:
    If you want to rumble or register beef: 1. leave your actual email, or I will delete your chicken ass 2. especially if you're making uninformed, non sequitur, ill-conceived attacks on my race, creed, and/or personal life, of which you know naught.

ELSEWHERE

  • Jay Smooth = media assassin. Seriously, Jay is taking folks to task on their played out representation of hip-hop but yo Jay - you read the Oregonian?

  • Snoop's "Drop It Like It's Hot" is the best thing that I've heard in ages. The Neptunes have been largely MIA this year (except for that N.E.R.D. album no one picked up) but this new track is ridiculous: mouth pop and clicks, a simple bass drum, and the hiss of aerosal sprays. Brilliant. Want to make it even better? Peep the video. Hot, hot, hot.
    (credit: Hardly Art, Hardly Garbage)

  • CEO of the R.O.C.? Or how about President of Def Jam?
    (credit: Faux Rillz)

  • Speaking of the Roc - they have their own iPod-esque player?
    (credit: Coolfer.com)

  • For those who aren't getting enough spooning in bed, you can now get a man pillow.

  • Eminem's new album cover. As Royal Magazine points out: um, didn't we already see this before?