Saturday, February 24, 2007

Broken spectacles

Geert Lovink on blogging, quoted by Mick Fealty on Comment is Free:

"Blogging is a bleed-to-death strategy. Implosion is not the right word. Implosion implies a tragedy and spectacle that is not present here. Blogging is the opposite of the spectacle. It is flat (and yet meaningful). Blogging is not a digital clone of the 'letter to the editor'. Instead of complaining and arguing, the blogger puts him or herself in the perversely pleasurable position of media observer."

And why not?

14 comments:

patroclus said...

Polly Toynbee seems to think that CiF is representative of the blogosphere as a whole. A lot of Guardian journalists seem to think that CiF is the same as blogging, the poor deluded creatures.

Also, this whole thing about how people are 'shouting louder' because they can use blogs as soapboxes. No one is shouting any louder than before, it's just that Polly and her ilk can now hear us.

I've read that Geert Lovink article before, and I didn't understand a word of it then, either. It may well be that I am too simple to understand, in which case, Tim, it would be nice if you could translate for us.

I personally am not conscious of blogging being a 'strategy' of any sort; it's more like a nice hobby. And as for the notion of bloggers as 'media observers', well some of us may observe the media from time to time, but I wouldn't say it's what most of us have as a raison d'etre.

Plus: anyone who thinks blogging isn't a spectacle obviously hasn't spent a lot of time chez Girl With A One-Track Mind.

In conclusion: some journalists are a bit up their own arse as regards their own conception of their own importance. But in the spirit of fairness, you could probably say the same thing about some bloggers.

Annie said...

I'm all for perverse pleasure, me.

Annie said...

And
People are getting bored with the given formats; they don't catch up with the news anymore, it no longer sticks to their cervical memory stick..

What can it mean? And do they sell them in Dixons?

First Nations said...

HO, Diomed, well met! Do you sup with Glaucus to-night?

Tim Footman said...

Haven't the foggiest. I think the reference to 'spectacle' suggests that Lovink sees himself in the tradition of the Situationists, as I did when I was about 19. But it's the last sentence that gets me (if I understand it). Why should "complaining and arguing" be distinct from being a "media observer"? And is there anything wrong with the latter.

And as for the cervical wotnot, I think it begs questions about some hacks' USBs.

Tim Footman said...

FN: Please excuse me, I've just woken up, but wtf?

St. Anthony said...

So typical of Toynbee and her ilk ... they always know what is good for us.
Pathetic, and so Guardian ... they really do think they have a finger on the pulse, when they really kicking a dead horse ... to recklessly mix metaphors.

dh said...

Well it is amazing how fast bloggers adjust their perspective when they get hired by mainstream publications.

Spinsterella said...

Why is it that media commentators, when writing about blogs, appear to have only read, at most, three, ever?

Billy said...

I wonder if CiF will in the future, adopt some kind of moderation of comments like everyone else does.

It would lose something but at least there wouldn't be quite as many loons.

Tim Footman said...

You won't believe this Billy, but they've got a fairly rigorous filtering process. Many people have complained that it's too brutal, in fact.

So just try to imagine how unpleasant the ones that get removed must be...

patroclus said...

To Spin's point, I noticed today that Charlie Brooker has atoned somewhat for his earlier slagging off of blogs, and now apparently reads them all the time. Well, he reads one. And hates it. And it isn't a proper blog anyway.

Wait, what was my point again?

Valerie said...

I'm getting a little wearied of the "bloggers are boring, pitiful schmoes to whom no one is listening" meme. It's patently untrue. I prefer to think about what it says about our essential love of and fascination with humanity that we care enough to pore over the thoughts, lives, and literature of strangers of whom we can only be certain that we share a species.

call me Pollyanna.

First Nations said...

Geert needed a line from Bulwer-Lytton fired across his bow.