Thursday, September 20, 2007

Sigh... Blogging: Beginning of the End?

Few people will likely read this post, as it's the first in my blog.

I want to say, first, that I am opposed to the idea of blogs on principle. Not because I don't want people to express themselves, or that I am any kind of luddite. What I fear is a universe of commentators and navel-gazers who are so busy pontificating, prognosticating, pointing fingers and engineering calculated praise that they don't have time to create anything original or real.

Taken to its logical conclusion, a world of bloggers is largely a world of watchers, not a world of do-ers. A world of masturbatory, self-congratulatory noise, with so little signal remaining to be undetectable. A veritable echo-chamber of idiocy. A post-apocalyptic world of film critics.

So, with some reservations and resentment, this is the world I now join. Hi, Blogosphere. I hate your name. It is ersatz, self-important, and pretentious. It's representative of our failures as a society. We are so decadent and self-absorbed that we have actually given a name to our latent, reactionary rants. And not a very good one. Blog is bad enough. Blogosphere? C'mon. If it was the seventies we'd be calling it the "Wide World of Amateur Halfwits."

I'm not saying Blogging portends the fall of human civilization. On the whole prime time television has been leading the way there for at least 50 years now.

So why do it at all? In fairness, I felt like I had to. Where I roll, information is everything, and information is interconnected. The currency of this world is attention. When people want to pay it to you, you need to give them a signal to follow. In practice, that signal is best produced in the form of a blog. Having a blog is like having a bank account in the attention economy. You can't get paid with out it.

And thus my blog was born. I consider myself a contemplative person. If I am going to have something as preposterous as a blog, you can expect that I will put some effort into it.

So there's a flaw in my logic. If blogs are all noise and no signal, then why bother trying to make it good? Because I care about what I do and say. And perhaps I should allow for the fact that others do too.

Damn it, blogosphere. Forgive me. And as for you, the jury is still out. History will tell us if blogging was the beginning of the end of civilization.