All about Kottke. November 24, 2001 1:05 PM   Subscribe

Why does every thread that mentions Kottke even tangentially have to end up being about Kottke?
Interestingly, the second two examples were posted by Miguel, who often ends up in the same situation.
Do we now create a new classification of "web singularity" to go along with web celebrity?
posted by Su to Bugs at 1:05 PM (36 comments total)

Whoops, forgot to categorize, but I find humor in the mistake.

Anyway, if the Kottke-chat actually added anything to the thread, or something, I could even deal with it. But in the Sinceritybird thread, the Kottke reference had to do with linking to him, not his style. Somehow this got completely misinterpreted and has spawned yet another round of bitching about him, completely sidetracking the post's topic. It almost went away, and them someone went and brought him back up, with a pointless link to his front page.
posted by Su at 1:18 PM on November 24, 2001


It's all gone now. I wish Matt could make all bad things go away.

By the way. The spawn of minimalism in design really shouldn't be accredited to Kottke. More like Tufte and his predecessors. I think that's what were some of the threads alluding to. Just thought I'd like to add some insight into that issue. Continue on with the thread.
posted by geoff. at 1:25 PM on November 24, 2001


I agree with Su--why do people still have bugs up their asses about Kottke? It's inexplicable. But (filtering out the kottke-chat) I thought both those threads had good stuff in them. I'd especially like to revisit that minimalism topic, if there are good links to be found that don't have the dreaded curse of J-Ko associated with them.
posted by rodii at 1:29 PM on November 24, 2001


awww... it's gone just when i posted a really great comment about that site 'linkworthy' in reference to how i want to use that sites format for my ex-wifes' bookmark page... she can't find anything anyhow.... oh well, the thread was going down the drain anyhow... it really needed some hope
posted by tilt at 1:39 PM on November 24, 2001


why do people still have bugs up their asses about Kottke? It's inexplicable.

I don't think it's inexplicable at all. People just have a tendency to push back against what they perceive as hype.
posted by MrBaliHai at 2:00 PM on November 24, 2001


i don't think it's necessarily that all these people have bugs up their asses about kottke (although i'm sure some do) i think it's more that people are tired of hearing about him. there are numerous posts that include his name for no apparent reason other than name-dropping (for lack of a better term); posts that would usually go unnoticed draw attention by including his name somewhere within. i wrote as a comment before that "maybe if we just stop talking about him he'll go away" which i admit is much more abrasive than i'd intended. but i think that if people stopped concentrating on him so much (because admit it, people do), especially since most topics concerning him don't really fit the point of MeFi, that these arguments wont take place, posts won't be deleted, and we'll all be a heck of a lot happier.
posted by paulrockNJ at 2:05 PM on November 24, 2001


>I'd especially like to revisit that minimalism topic
so would i, clean design combined with quality presentation of content is something i think everyone likes... i.e. metafilter (sucking up to Matt) it's alot harder to put together than it is to appreciate, as an avid beer drinker with only two fingers (control, alt, delete is a bitch) i think minimalist is great!!!
oh pleez don't ban me Matt!!!
posted by tilt at 2:20 PM on November 24, 2001


Another fine mess I've got myself into. Sorry - it was a genuinely felt post and I enjoyed and learnt from all those who commented. But why all this negativity towards Kottke? We were talking about design; not about the person. Seen from the outside, his work and writing are a breath of fresh air and his new design for Romenesko's Store was clean and welcome, IMO. And not at all like his website; at least for someone coming from a print background. I guess you're all sick of him. Pity. The fact that someone's well known shouldn't make one blasé. Never mind, though.
Matt: you must be sick of my apologies too, but here goes another. You live and learn and all that... :)
posted by MiguelCardoso at 2:40 PM on November 24, 2001


We were talking about design; not about the person.

So? That never stopped the webnerds before. Just look at what people say when Jacob Nielson is mentioned.

For some, the thought process necessary to seperate someone from their work in a subject they are passionate about doesn't exist. Kudos for the crackdown Matt.
posted by skallas at 2:50 PM on November 24, 2001


I guess you're all sick of him. Pity.

I don't think it's so much that anyone's sick of him, just that he's fairly popular and stuff he does isn't really big news as a result. Like, what would people say "yes, Jason's still a good designer"? I think design discussions tend to work out better if there's a few different links to sites that maybe people haven't seen before. It gets good traffic to people's sites who could use it, and lets people focus on the design rather than the personalities involved.

Kottke posts are sort of like kitten posts. People like both of them, but they tend not to promote interesting discussion. They're easy targets for adulation and approbation alike, but not much depth of discussion. I like to learn new things when I read MeFi, I already know about Jason.
posted by jessamyn at 2:53 PM on November 24, 2001


Lay off the webnerds, already! Have you ever thought, skallas, how much we ordinary, selfish users owe them? Who's next for the chop? Geeks? Bloggers? Anyone who has yet to - hateful, hateful expression! - "get a life"?
The mind reels...

posted by MiguelCardoso at 3:04 PM on November 24, 2001


It seemed to me that the worst of the anti-cardoso backlash followed after some remarks in MeTa, like this one, in which people may have seemed to be forming a sort of cult of cardoso. And there has of course long been the semblance of a kult of kottke.

I think many people don't like that that happens, and it creates some negative feelings, which come out in threads that in any way seem like they may be part of, or perpetuate, such trends.

(I should say, I also think the whole thing has got to be an overreaction; there is no cabal.)
posted by mattpfeff at 3:05 PM on November 24, 2001


Cult of Cardoso, indeed. Go Miguel. I thought the thread worthy, btw.

I find myself using, "...someone coming from a print background," frequently in the course of my everyday conversation now. And it's not even applicable in my case!
posted by Vek at 3:13 PM on November 24, 2001


Miguel: This had nothing to do with you; no apology necessary. The Kottke references in the posts were unnecessary, sure, but things don't blow up until someone decides to start bashing him, while ignoring the actual topic.
The threads, continuing on their proper courses, probably would have been fine, and even interesting. I would also like to revisit the minimalism discussion, but we'll have to wait until an appropriate link comes up. I looked around a little after Rodii's comment, but haven't found anything particularly recent.
posted by Su at 3:30 PM on November 24, 2001


Hmmm. I have to wonder if anyone would have even linked to the Obscure Store redesign if it had been anyone else but Jason Kottke.

And I really have to wonder about people who take any opportunity to just bash him. He's a guy. He's got a weblog. Get over it, really.
posted by solistrato at 4:00 PM on November 24, 2001


Nothing to do with Miguel (his post was ok IMO) or Jason (i visit his site almost daily) or Obscure Store (another daily visit, and i noticed the redesign on wednesday, i believe) but maybe any comment/thread that is just too bad to be posted should be linked to something like this ... it's about as minimalistic as you can get... so instead of deleting a comment/thread is just gets redirected??? maybe with an additional programing clause that emails the poster a 'nice message' that somone else has clicked that link and then after umpteen hundred messages they would think twice (three - four, etc.) times before they post... but then Matt would have to change the guidelines page to offer fair warning of 'Bad Posting"...
just an idea???
posted by tilt at 4:05 PM on November 24, 2001


Hmmm. I have to wonder if anyone would have even linked to the Obscure Store redesign if it had been anyone else but Jason Kottke.

Seriously. The point is that just because Kottke had something to do with a project doesn't mean it's newsworthy. To be honest, I don't think there was anything outstanding about the Obscure Store redesign, and certainly nothing worthy of being a front page post.

Besides, everyone here reads J-Ko everyday anyway, so linking to him (and three days after the fact) is a bit of a moot point.
posted by dogmatic at 4:18 PM on November 24, 2001


I hate when I snark early and miss the feeding frenzy. I knew this one was gonna get spirited away, but I bet there was some interesting design stuff not directly related to JK. Would have been fun to see where it went. Maybe there should be some sort of limited-time-limbo-land in which discredited threads can languish for a day before vanishing altogether. Better a Cheshire grin than no grin at all...
posted by Opus Dark at 4:45 PM on November 24, 2001


I thought it was a worthy post. Obscure Store has long been a bastion of ultra-minimal design. I even showed it to a class last week as an example of getting a lot out of a very limited set of resources. So (I think) it's news when a poster-child for text-only redesigns. Feel free to disagree; we do that here. But why squelch the thread?

Note that my opinion has nothing to do with Kottke. I look at his site maybe once a month (contra dogmatic); I have no special love or dislike for him. I think saying "everyone" reads him, or Zeldman, or glassdog, or fray every day or every week is just wrong, but so what if they did? These threads weren't about "look at this cool weblog by Jason Kottke." The second one, on sinceritybird, wasn't about J-Ko at all before people started bashing him. And as a result, two opportunities to discuss actual web design issues rather than the Taliban and Osama bin Laden are gone thanks to the Kottke Death Spiral.
posted by rodii at 10:16 PM on November 24, 2001


Feel free to disagree; we do that here. But why squelch the thread?

Agreed! Every time anything remotely Kottke-related is posted – even if postworthy – the thread is killed. It's almost as if there's a ... a sinister Cabal working behind the scenes...

Dear God, what have I said...?

posted by D at 10:32 PM on November 24, 2001


*yanks curtain shut*

Nothing to see here, folks. There Is No Cabal™.
posted by Succa at 10:50 PM on November 24, 2001


numerous posts that include his name for no apparent reason other than name-dropping

I kottke have no kottke idea what you're kottke talking about kottke kottke kottke!
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 10:52 PM on November 24, 2001


I just want to see if rodii makes the big 1500 tonight....

Without using the names Kottke, Taliban or binLaden. Go, rodii, go!
posted by y2karl at 11:07 PM on November 24, 2001


*cringes*
posted by rodii at 12:11 AM on November 25, 2001


I think more importantly the question should be, why are there never any threads that link to Meg and then degenerate into how wonderful a person she is? Or any of the other A-Listers, for that matter? It's always Kottke. Kottke this. Kottke that. I mean, he's okay and all, but I really don't know what all the fuss is about.

Meg's smart AND cute. Jason's just smart.
posted by ZachsMind at 5:09 AM on November 25, 2001


Meg's smart AND cute. Jason's just smart.

Oh, Christ. OK, I declare this thread to have officially reached the level of intellectual background noise.
posted by rodii at 7:48 AM on November 25, 2001


You're so cute when you are angry.
posted by CrazyUncleJoe at 11:50 AM on November 25, 2001


Don't make me smack you.
posted by rodii at 2:29 PM on November 25, 2001


* cries *
posted by baby_jessamyn at 2:55 PM on November 25, 2001


Now look what you've done!
posted by MiguelCardoso at 3:04 PM on November 25, 2001


Whoo Hoo, let's start a pool--rodii's on the verge of rolling his MetaFilter rodiiodometer! Start your geeky trolls...
posted by y2karl at 3:20 PM on November 25, 2001


(Karl, please get a life and stop trying to embarrass me.)
posted by rodii at 5:09 PM on November 25, 2001


I wasn't trying to embarrasss you, sorry.
posted by y2karl at 6:03 PM on November 25, 2001


rodii: "I declare this thread to have officially reached the level of intellectual background noise."

Isn't that, by default, what happens to any MeFi thread when I post to it? You speak as if this is a new phenomenon. I've been quietly assumed by the majority to be white background noise in MeFi for at least a year and a half now.

I'm rather proud of that, come to think of it.
posted by ZachsMind at 8:31 AM on November 26, 2001


You speak as if this is a new phenomenon.

I do?

I'm rather proud of that, come to think of it.

Why?
posted by rodii at 8:41 AM on November 26, 2001


Hurrah! The Obscure Store and Reading Room is available old-style: "For those who don't like the fonts (or other things) on the redesigned Obscure."
posted by Carol Anne at 10:46 AM on November 28, 2001


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