Tuesday, July 25, 2023



Fine, I give up.

Recently I heard a host of one of my favorite podcasts ("Seriously Wrong") casually toss off their contempt for blogs. And they're usually such nice young men! Additionally, not more than an hour ago I read an article that took a significant moment to criticize people who think that any book should instead be a five paragraph blog post. Which, I mean, sure, most books shouldn't be five paragraph blog posts, but, why "blog post"? There seems to be a lurking contempt in that.

First of all, where are all these blogs? I can't find any of them other than that nice one where the person goes and visits every library they can. I have long considered myself one of the last bloggers on the Internet for this very fact. So are we to consider everything written on the Internet that is not under the rubric of a large company to be a blog? At that point the net is cast so wide as to make the term "blog" meaningless.

My personal view is that a blog is something like one of those now old fashioned single author columns in the newspaper. In this view of a blog, one person expounds on the issues of the day, combined sometimes with their personal issues, and/or with areas of particular interest and minor hobbyist expertise. There is often a mildly humorous bent, but there doesn't strictly have to be. These blogs are too personal for advertising and are generally non monetized. They are written by bloggers. They are made of blogposts.

So... you managed to find one of these. 

Do you have any tips on how to do that?

I have covered this issue before and surmised that maybe around 2005 the Internet was full of halfhearted blogs and the quality of them grew horribly watered down. Blithely ambitious people annoyingly talked too much about their blogs that they abandoned anyway after two weeks, and then everyone sort of solidified their conception of blogs around this temporary moment. 

Now all those people are gone, and those blogs are gone too.

But the idea just sort of carries on without connection to anything underlying it.

Nevertheless, whatever is behind it all, and however frustrating it is, sometimes one has to accept that a word or an idea doesn't have the meaning one wants it to have. "Blog" apparently is such a word.

Which is what I wrote this column to express.

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If you were wondering, yes, you should comment. Not only does it remind me that I must write in intelligible English because someone is actually reading what I write, but it is also a pleasure for me since I am interested in anything you have to say.

I respond to pretty much every comment. It's like a free personalized blog post!

One last detail: If you are commenting on a post more than two weeks old I have to go in and approve it. It's sort of a spam protection device. Also, rarely, a comment will go to spam on its own. Give either of those a day or two and your comment will show up on the blog.