The Last Post…


…is due. According to the Financial Times.

“…which brings us to the spectre haunting the blogosphere – tedium. If the pornography of opinion doesn’t leave you longing for an eroticism of fact, the vast wasteland of verbiage produced by the relentless nature of blogging is the single greatest impediment to its seriousness as a medium”

“For Marx and Engels, journalism was trivial – an impediment to serious, memorable and above all influential work. “Mere potboiling,” wrote Engels of the more than 500 articles he and Marx wrote for The New York Daily Tribune, “It doesn’t matter if they are never read again.”

And that, in the end, is the dismal fate of blogging: it renders the word even more evanescent than journalism; yoked, as bloggers are, to the unending cycle of news and the need to post four or five times a day, five days a week, 50 weeks of the year, blogging is the closest literary culture has come to instant obsolescence. No Modern Library edition of the great polemicists of the blogosphere to yellow on the shelf; nothing but a virtual tomb for a billion posts – a choric song of the word-weary bloggers, forlorn mariners forever posting on the slumberless seas of news.”

[Thanks to JR for the link. He so needs a blog it hurts.]

Clearly the writer hasn’t read (sic) 😉 or my post on the subject [here] where I paraphrase Ed Murrow in Goodnight and Goodluck:

“Given that blogs are so popular a medium (ok, this one excepted 😉 we need to make sure that they are more than ‘merely wires and lights in a box.’ ‘If they are right, and this instrument is good for nothing but to entertain, amuse and insulate, then the tube is flickering now and we will soon see that the whole struggle is lost.’ ‘Just once in a while let us exalt the importance of ideas and information.’”

Technorati Tags:


3 responses to “The Last Post…”

  1. This author must not have discovered tagging and Google Blog search. While I understand the assumption that blogging is about up to the minute commentary and is consequently obsolete one minute later, I believe there is more to come.
    For example, imagine a search that builds a list of blog posts to show the development of an author’s opinion over time. Or a search that shows the conversations on an issue as it develops with new information.
    We are at the beginning of a sea change in our understanding and assumptions about knowledge. Instead of objective absolutes, we (well the next several generations) will come to value the nuances of subjectivity correlated to objectivity. Encyclopedia entries might have multiple dimensions.
    For example: the top level entry on an important occurrence like a war or national political campaign, might have just the objective vital statistics. But then the reader could follow each of several perspectives and opinions, questionable claims of truth as well as conspiracy theories. Because, even wacko conspiracy theories tell us something about the mood surrounding an event and the interactions between the various parties to it.
    Once we fully appreciate subjectivity, we will laugh at those who in the past claimed objectivity.
    We’ve only begun to blog!

  2. If Marx and Engels reckoned that print journalism was epheremal, this surely just underlines that the medium has nothing to do with what we’re talking about here?
    Raymond Carver wrote of honing a sentence until it would carry the right note when you hit it. Good writing – whether in a blog, book, or newspaper column – will reverberate and keep echoing in the minds of those who read it.
    The hardest lesson I learned working in the publishing industry was that you would make more money from the high-risk strategy that was taking a long time to make a good book than you would making three poor books in the same time span. In a crowded marketspace, quality was more recognisable than any other aspect. Maybe it’s the same with blogs – it’s those who use the absence of a daily print deadline to pursue quality who’ll end up the winners.
    On a tangent, I’m beginning to wonder where this idea that instant writing = bad comes from. How about the idea that constant self-editing into nullity and dullness, removing all risk (and dirt?) isn’t great? Where would Kerouac’s “On the Road” have been without instant writing? If everyone edits their posts into something resembling Finnegan’s Wake, readers are in for a considerable amount of pain…

  3. LeOgAhEr

    I Love you girls