Friday, March 28, 2008

The never-ending story

One last valiant attempt to explain to the CiF massive what blogging is/could be/should be. Although I suspect I'll get points deducted by Patroclus for using an MSM analogy towards the end.

"The results of a new survey on the reading habits of 11- to 14-year-olds seem profoundly depressing. To be fair, any survey about teen habits is bound to provoke abject glumness in anyone over the age of about 23. The kids can't win: if they read vacuous celebrity magazines, they're idiots; if they subvert our expectations and read Dickens and Proust, that means they should get out more. And if they have exactly the same reading habits as I had at that age (Douglas Adams, Spike Milligan and Anti-Nazi League leaflets, as I remember), they're probably plain weird.

No surprises, then. They prefer Heat and Bliss to homework and the Financial Times. But the intriguing bit lies in the middle, where a collective thumbs-up (do teenagers still put their thumbs up?) goes to 'my own blog or fan fiction'."


And so on and so forth...

13 comments:

Annie Rhiannon said...

Oh, I remember reading those Anti-Nazi leaflets too. Sarah Pomfret in Year 3 came back from London with a pile of them. I wanted to go with her on a "rally" but my mum wouldn't let me.

dh said...

Good bit of cifing there Tim. Not sure about 'ringmaster' though. I'm more of an aide memoiriste I think. Where will all this endless introspection take us next kind of thing.

Tim Footman said...

I think I was banned from ANL rallies as well, Annie. CND was fine, though.

Ringmaster? Puppeteer? Subbuteo player? Your call, Dick.

dh said...

Not sure if it's relevant but I blogged for a couple of years before I got a single comment. Then they started to trickle in and now of course there's no looking back.

Mangonel said...

'my own' blog'?

Golly, where to start.

(wv - fknkyanq. It means I must really really want to have commented for me to have typed that little lot out.)

Spinsterella said...

Ringmaster - I like.

("Ringmistress"? No, that's not really working is it..)

Slightly off topic but:

I have a friend-of-a-friend who is heavily into dance music and he's been on-line DJing recently. It sounds very much like blogging in that (if you're any good) you get involved with a supportive little community across the country/world.

Most of his RL friends find it utterly bewildering that he spends his spare time DJing at home for a very small (albeit appreciative) audience, but I reckon there are many parallels with blogging.

(Not least the fact that people that don't do it really don't get it.)

Flirty Something said...

Does that make me a teenager because I read my own blog?

treespotter said...

they read?!?!?

i didn't realize they still do that.

Rimshot said...

Perhaps it's simply a case of one mocking what one doesn't understand?

But then, I participate in blogging and I'm not sure I fully understand it myself...which is part of the fun, no rule book.

Tim Footman said...

As I keep saying, Dick, it's like the tree falling in the forest: if nobody reads us, are we still blogging?

If glad you persevered, Mangonel.

I like that, Spin - the blogger as a sort of digital Peelie.

Yes, Flirty. If that makes you feel better.

If txtspk is writing, Tree, I suppose they rd t.

Different degrees of misunderstanding, Rimshot. Although the fact that my CiF article attracted fewer responses than the blog post that refers to it might be significant...

dh said...

Ah yes the old tree in the forest thing. Would we still do it if nobody commented? Is there more to reciprocal commenting than mere blogging etiquette? One could discuss this for ever. I remember being quite shocked when I got my first comment. Not any more. One thing lead to another and soon I was doing hard comments.

patroclus said...

Ooh, the 'kids these days are stupid' line really winds me up. If anyone had asked me what my favourite read was when I was 14, I would have said Smash Hits. At least I would if I'd been being being truthful; knowing me I would probably have lied and said The Odyssey, or something.

Tim Footman said...

I could control the comments, Dick. But a week after I'd started on RSS feeds, I'd pawned all my furtniture.

Smash Hits was pretty much the Odyssey, Patroclus. At least it was when Neil Tennant worked there.