Weblog readers often segue frictionlessly into being weblog writers, they build up relationships with each other through their sites, they link to and promote people they respect, and they continually fact-check one another. The end result is a culture in which good, insightful articles and writers build up links, respect and visibility - each weblog given context by its membership of the community.
But as more weblogs appear, these cultural connections are becoming strained. Groups like the highly politicised "warblogger" community have all but split from the contextualising influence of other sites.
Does this actually matter? Perhaps it does - after all, someone might stumble onto one of these sites via a Google search, and believe the utter rubbish that they are reading.
But I've always felt that one of the important things about blogging is the freedom you have to say whatever the hell you like. I write about what I find interesting, rather than about what I think other people will find interesting. The size of the Internet means that there are inevitably other people whose interests overlap mine sufficiently that they read me, and that's great. But I don't actively try to be interesting.
Some of you may have noticed.
But, then again, there is a difference between writing stuff that isn't very interesting, as I do, and writing stuff that isn't true. If I blog it, it's because I believe that it's true. I'm wrong often enough, but not deliberately so.
I'm sure that the warbloggers believe what they write too, though. So what exactly is the problem here?
At the end of the day, you have always to be a bit sceptical about what you read, and take account of the source. This is especially true of what you find on the 'net, yes, but it's true of everything you read - newspapers, books, whatever. And it's true of other media, too - I'm thinking about TV here.Posted to Blogs by Simon Brunning at August 28, 2003 12:37 PM