Tuesday, April 11, 2006

between blog anarchy and blog authority

I sit in a reserved seat that lies halfway between blog anarchy and blog authority.

What I mean is this: I proclaim guidelines and rules for effective blogging, and I at the same time believe in each blogger being multi-taskingly creative, charmingly idiosyncratic, and memorably eccentric.

You cannot "blog anyway you want" and expect to be interesting, effective, or popular. There are certain observations that exert some authoritative expertise in most blog applications.

Like what?

Like (1) generic templates makes you look unprofessional, technically deficient, or lazy. Or: (2) blog text should be short paragraphs, generally brief, and frequently posted. And: (3) personalize, customize, non-standardize your blog to make it memorable, sincere, and human.

Blog Business Summit, one of the best and most interesting business blogs I know of, states with great wisdom, in "Blog Dogma":

"...one of the problems with blog dogma is that the pundits don't have budgets, employees, or resources to manage. I always advise businesses to blog their own way, however it works for them."

One cannot argue with such sober statements, based on practical experience promoting products with blogs.

I might attempt to toss in this little footnote: IF it works for them. Not if they stubbornly refuse to listen to professional blogological advice, and arrogantly charge forward in their misguided delusions.

For example, Delusion #1: if the company wants to have a pseudo-blog, a blogoid object, by using a ghost writer, or by creating some irrelevant fictional character, who has spurious insight based on pretended discoveries during invented adventures.

Or another example, Delusion #2: if the CEO insists on publishing boring, press release, corporate fluffy, "we" oriented, domineering but unsubstantiated braggadocio, long-winded, dense paragraph, rambling posts to his blog.

[QUOTE: my comment posted to this BBS article]

The weblog is merely an infant technology that is going schizoid as business tries to do everything *but* be interactive, candid, and memorable in a blog.

With blog consultants making big claims, but not offering a single case study proof, and others trying, like Robert Scoble and Shel Israel, to verify and evangelize the Blog Revolution of Web Content Universalization, the Rise of Individual Unvarnished Voice, there really is no conflict.

This is, all of it, including me and you, lurching forward at the highest rate of adoption speed of any technology in the history of mankind.

The lowly mini-web with the ugly name, the blawwwg (ugh), little monstrosity, is bravely paving the way to Absolute Switched-On User Empowerment.

What's needed now is not a jumble of theoretical debate or shouting sincere slogans at each other...

...but, rather, the New Super Blog of Blogosphere 4.0, the multi media, hyper-interactive, mulit functional social media platform for Web 2.0 tech grandeur.



MARYBETH said...

Hi SS,
How did you create that multicolorful image ??
I Like it

steven edward streight said...

Using Paint Shop Pro 7, which cost only $15 when I bought an emachines computer at Best Buy, a special deal.

I used paint brush and spray paint tools to create various scattered patches of colors, probably added colored foil filters and other crazy effects, then, the finishing touch was to use the lasso tool to select irregular chunks of painted space, like a little tiny island of colors, and then select the kaleidoscope tool from effects and it turned the patch of crazed colors into a kaleidoscope.

I did this over and over again, selecting little spots of colors, no matter what shape, at random almost, then applying the kaleidoscope filter to it.

You can just scatter paint sprays, drippings, brush strokes, etc. at random, then use that kaleidoscope selection procedure.

I made this painting a couple years ago, and retrieved it for this post, since it seems to combine anarchy and plan.

IMO, Xian said...

I was on the laptop... it was in my lap. I was watching someone whose laptop was on their lap. From the corner of my eye, I could feel that he might be watching me from the corner of his eye, two fields of vision intersecting at their edges as we typed.
I left a comment on a friend's web page while he wrote about me writing about him, typing quickly to cover the fact that he knew that I knew that he was watching me, out of the corner of his eye, though he probably had no idea that I was also typing into a chat client to the person whose blog I was comenting in. Who is he, to write about me? Who am I, to be written about? Who the hell does he think he is, to assume he is being written about?

Maybe I'm just bored.

A blogger should never admit to writing something out of boredom, as it detracts from the quality of the piece. A blogger may sometimes detract from the quality of the piece as a method of ensuring deniable liability "Perhaps you may find this post overly accusatory, so I must assure you that I am quite drunk at time of posting, I do not even remember what I wtore two minuts ago!!" or "This post may seem extremely pretentious, but I'm bored and idle hands are the devil's handiwork" or "This post may seem quite random, but I assure you it is the product of the insane super-clarity that is unique to combinations of sleep deprivation, malnutrition, and caffein overdose." All are acceptable, and simultaneously detract from the quality of the piece with self-referencial depretiation and add to the humanity of the piece with the awkward humor of self-defacing irreverance.

Also, posts shouldn't be self referential -- ideally, a post should not even refer to or cite itself as an example or exception for anything. That should always be left to the comments.

IMO. Xian.

steven edward streight said...

that is correct.

but most blogs are boring, even when the blogger is not bored.

personal blogs quickly become boring when all you read is self-referencing chatter about last night's dinner, a movie recently viewed, or a blogology theory untested and fanatically espoused.

if you have something mundane, trivial, and irrelevant to say, at least say in a novel, bizarre, or unique manner.

people can practice their blog post writing by leaving witty astonishing comments at other people's blogs.

IMO, Xian said...

Though, leaving a comment is something of a tragic act of sacrifice. I've left more comments to random livejournal users than I have posts on my own livejournal, with a combined quality probably greater than the combined quality of my livejournal, and they are gone. Lost drops in the electronic sea, untraceable and irretreavable, even when they weren't deleted out of confusion or anger.
Commenting is good practice, but every key-stroke is a gift to someone else with absolutely no expectation for a return of any kind save for metaphysical, like dropping a penny in a well and hoping for good luck, a penny that could have been spent on one's own blog, a keystroke that could have gone toward the construction of an opus.
Not to say that it was a waste, or that the keystroke invested in the comment would have existed if it were put toward one's opus. Cross-training in all forms is important for all 'sports,' the best runner should also be a good swimmer and bike-rider, the best blogger should also be a good commenter, and the effort expended on commenting is still valualble toward the contribution of ones own work, if only because it helps distance one from their work, an occasional necessity... but the potential eternal loss of the comment is still painfull.

And forget about keeping copies of the comments; that just seems wrong. Though it is painfull, it's probably the reason why a comment may be better than the commenter's own blog.

MARYBETH said...

Really vibrant and visually captivating! I thank you for the excellent explanation!--- if i only had a better body, more patience, and another lifetime in which to master these complex and wonderful programs.
you know Vaspy .... I am wondering why someone or some oneses =) has not yet jumped on the money making band wagon and created a virtual and or real time class room for teaching photo shop? I have taken other creative classes this way.
what say you Vaspy?
Happy Spring =)

MARYBETH said...

I often wonder if it not a word loosly used to describe somthing else?
How is it possible to be bored??

steven edward streight said...

Thanks for the compliment.

I tried doing another experiment with kaleidoscope effects, but slightly different. Don't know if it's any good. I guess I'll post it anyway.

I think there are online tutorials, you turtle, for PhotoShop. I use Paint Shop Pro, not PhotoShop.

Try Googling appropriate search terms for what you want.

Do you have PhotoShop or some other graphics programmed installed on your system?

steven edward streight said...

Vjtosoz' I see a treatise in the works here. Keep theorizing about comments and blogs being words typed into compuspace, the digital effluvium.

Comment posting is self sacrificial, you are correct again. Taking the time and effort to post a comment, especially an encouraging or richly relevant comment, should be appreciated.

Pseudo Bloggers never reciprocate, never go to your blog and post a comment.

Pseudo Bloggers just take advantage of your free content contributions to their blog, which can actually keep an otherwise boring blog interesting.

And some bloggers never reciprocate, no matter how many good comments you contribute to their blog.

It makes me wonder sometimes if they simply aren't smart enough to think of anything to say. Probably.

MARYBETH said...

I have a new photoshop version. PLEASE DO NOT leave comments like the one you did today under the knitting retro image.
Gracias Mi Amigo

steven edward streight said...

No problemo, senorita.

But all I said in my comment was that it was nice to see young teen girls who were NOT being sleazy in MySpace.

I no longer care much about analyzing MySpace, for what I saw and experienced with my MySpace blog was a constant bombardment of sleazy sexual garbage, even though my MySpace blog explicitly condemned the toilet of perversion and promiscuity that MySpace old geezers had allowed it to become.

MySpace is trying to clean up its act. But I would venture to say that the a large percentage of teens have a MySpace blog, and use it for sexual "hook-ups", ie, MySpace is a Dating Service, not a real blog platform.

Seeing your innocent illustration from some 50s ad for a knitting product or book, this innocent fun image just reminded me of its opposite.

Though I am finished with my investigation of MySpace, I keep hearing about it on the news.

I was not trying to be rude or vulgar. I was just expressing how innocent yarn and knitting is as a hobby, compared to the new teen rage of "blogging" at MySpace. That's all.

If you have teens in your clan who are on MySpace, I suggest you check out the profile, links, friends list, and bulletins to and from.

I know you are modest and not the type who would condone the depravity and predators' paradise that MySpace represents.