Get a good seat

Oddly enough, I was just watching a CSPAN thing earlier today about blogs and journalism and the misfit quality to blogging, bloggers, and their precise role (to say nothing of effect) on the world of institutional journalism (which blogs sorta orbit) and the world at large (which blogs both represent and speak to). Then I come home tonight and find there’s been this wonderful little spike in the blogospheric pulse right here in sg’s little plot of cyberspace. The best seats for clearest views are here, here, and here. What fascinates me the most about all this is how naturally and unavoidably a pretty specific back-and-forth about evidence and argumentation turned into a question of where precisely the day-to-day core of sg media is: in the institutional publications and outlets (SN and sogo and artist websites?) or the messier blogosphere? Fascinating, all the more so, because unlike the ongoing debate about the role of web logs in mainstream media and journalism (where the question is not so much if blogs are having an impact but what kind of effect this impact exerts), the debate in sg is about whether or not blogs and other unofficial e-publications are realigning the sg media axis. For the record, as I’ve said before, I don’t think that’s what’s happening. Blogs as I understand them not only never will supplant institutional and establishment media because blogs rely on those institutions and establishments for much of their content and source material. Bloggers, that is, tend to be more or less ordinary people with extraordinary interest in something. That doesn’t mean blogs aren’t having an effect in sg. It just means the effect isn’t revolutionary or of a kind that warrants too much self-congratulation on the part of bloggers who think they have somehow remade the landscape with their bon mots. Upshot: though it’s exasperating that argumentation is so underdeveloped that, for instance, words like “bad” still get used among my blogging brethren and sistren as if they are universally and fixedly understood to the mean the same thing to all people, this debate is not … well, a bad thing … kinda like growing pains.

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