Turned up to eleven: Fair and Balanced

Thursday, April 11, 2002

On another, perhaps lighter note, I was musing over the recent anti-warblogger crescendo, and I had what just might be an interesting and reasonably novel thought (at least, I hadn't heard it anywhere). The reason for all of this weblogger bile is similar to the articles written by newspaper columnists; fear and jealousy. To get at the fear, you have to note something about these particular bloggers, which I learned while reading Wrongwaygoback; these people are not new to the "blog scene", they have been doing this for a while. As such, they have developed their own, insular community that reinforces their ideas. They have their own conventions and ideas about how to do things, and probably feel quite misunderstood and neglected, that this great communication they are involved in doesn't ever get noticed, their great insights into the world disappear into the ether. Then, along comes 9/11, and all of a sudden all of these interlopers (I'm looking at you, Instantman pick up on this great new way to communicate (the blog), and in a matter of months, they are getting noticed by the big boys. Not only that, but professional writers are getting in on the game, and essentially mainstreaming their little private toy. Now, there are two responses to this; many people who were way ahead of the blog curve (tech writers, computer programmer types) fit into all of this fine, and carve out a nice slice of the rapidly growing pie. But some probably don't like it, especially seeing "newbies" getting all of the rewards, parlaying this hobby into a little stream of money, even. So, in tried and true geek tradition (see usenet, newsgroups, early e-mail groups), they flame you! They want your attention, and they will insult you to get it. Of course, it worked, and now they are invited to the party too, even if it is just to be laughed at. Just my 2 cents, take it for what you will.

I like doing this, and I get a kick out of it even if only a few people ever read it. I meet new people, and get exposed to different viewpoints. I don't want to run a newspaper, and I don't want everyone to agree with me. I just write what I think and some people read it, and some (fewer) people respond to it, and that is just fine. If I ever get a tip, I will keep it, and I surely won't feel guilty about it. I'm not going to lose any sleep over it. I expect these guys are quite happy with all the attention they got in the last week. Not all compensation is monetary; by their own logic, they are war-profiteering too.