Here is an article from John Dvorak from PC Magazine about blogging. February 5, 2002 6:23 AM   Subscribe

Here is an article from John Dvorak from PC Magazine about blogging.
posted by alball to General Weblog-Related at 6:23 AM (26 comments total)

Thanks. I was too lazy to link it myself. I have the hard copy at home.
posted by bunnyfire at 6:39 AM on February 5, 2002

Wow. This guy needs an editor.

"People who posted one have already done so, and the growth has slowed."

Eh? And if he thinks blogs don't have cat pictures, well...
posted by transient at 6:45 AM on February 5, 2002

I actually posted it before I had a chance to read your comment about it. I should have posted it in that thread rather than starting a new one. It was the first time I have ever posted anything, so I will be more careful in the future.
posted by alball at 6:46 AM on February 5, 2002

Poor article. He bypasses any useful purpose for the tools by dismissing them as "vanity publishing", and totally underplays the content management aspect. Someone writing an article without understanding the subject matter, IMO.
posted by walrus at 6:53 AM on February 5, 2002

I actually posted it before I had a chance to read your comment about it. I should have posted it in that thread rather than starting a new one.

what am i missing here?

metafilter is about as close as i get to the world of blogs. do all ye who call yrself bloggers think Dvorak's description of blogs as "public diaries" is accurate? or are they more a log of links? i've seen both types of sites referred to as impression is technically a blog is primarily about the links, but that the diary aspect is such a natural extension that they too are considered blogs. this question has puzzled me awhile.
posted by danOstuporStar at 7:00 AM on February 5, 2002

I think that John C. Dvorak is actually an early-model AI being tested by the PC Magazine labs. Not only does his prose have a certain automaton-like clunkiness, but he's certainly unfamiliar with human beings. His analysis of the possible "reasons" for blogging sound like the musings of a very slow Vulcan confronted with illogical human culture:

Societal need to share. As a cynic who gets paid to write, I have a hard time with this explanation. But it seems some people genuinely like to "share," and this is one way.

posted by BT at 7:06 AM on February 5, 2002

Crappy article, but surely not as bad as most Dvorak drivel which is usually written from a position of misplaced anger and platform advocacy.
posted by machaus at 7:40 AM on February 5, 2002

if you go to the earlier thread you, ahem, get to see a picture of me.....
posted by bunnyfire at 8:03 AM on February 5, 2002

Right on, BT. Someone should fling him a copy of Derek Powazek's book.

Antidepersonalization: When people begin to think that they are nothing more than a cog in the wheel of society, they look for any way to differentiate themselves.

'I am not a number! I am a, a... an IP number!'

The BBC's site has also been talking weblogs lately.
posted by rory at 8:05 AM on February 5, 2002

where is this earlier thread, bunnyfire?
posted by danOstuporStar at 8:09 AM on February 5, 2002

Got to love the beeb. Cheers Rory: that was better journalism, even if it still misses the most important step change that weblog tools have bought about: we're no longer designing static HTML. Some of us aren't even designing HTML. I'm talking about content management, templates etc ... the format is nothing new and anyone can go and laboriously edit code every time they have new content.
posted by walrus at 8:28 AM on February 5, 2002

posted by Voyageman at 8:34 AM on February 5, 2002

Is there any evidence that suggests the growth of weblogs has decreased?
posted by waxpancake at 8:37 AM on February 5, 2002

Voyageman, you found be vewwy vewwy quiet.....
posted by bunnyfire at 8:41 AM on February 5, 2002

See now, bunnyfire? If you had a blog, you could have self-linked to that image on your blog! Now doesn't that sound like fun?!
posted by Kafkaesque at 8:45 AM on February 5, 2002

me, I've got several weblogs. (1) straightforward personal 'blog - some links, some "journaling" (2) special topic 'blog for the novel I'm working on, which I started when I was stuck trying to write in other media and (3) work 'blog, in which I write about what I'm doing at work, post links related to my job, etc. in (1) and (3) I follow the links and commentary formula, whereas (2) is purely writing, no links at all. (I still consider all three to be "weblogs" to some extent.)

but I also brought weblogging into my job, by helping other people set up weblogs that aren't really weblogs - we use Blogger to post press releases and athletics news on our site, which means that I don't get pestered with these things every day or two, and the people who work on those projects can do it when they are motivated to.

then the next step, in the case of the athletics news, is that I and the media relations person can go into the coach's 'blog and edit what he's written (he's an enthusiastic writer, but....).

I'm actually looking forward to when we get Blogger Pro set up for the college, because there are a few features that seem potentially very useful.
posted by epersonae at 8:49 AM on February 5, 2002

Sounds like you better start a Blogblog, epersonae, just so we can all keep track of how your blogs are going.
posted by Kafkaesque at 9:12 AM on February 5, 2002

NY Newsday has a slightly more insightful piece about 'blogs (more specifically Blogger), featuring a few comments by Evan Williams from Blogger/Pyra. The piece does contain one slightly disturbing phrase:
"But the legion of [Andrew] Sullivan- [Virginia]Postrel wannabes have spread the graphics bug that directs the viewer to the company's [Blogger's] home page beyond the pundit community."
Are all of us bloggers Andrew Sullivan-Virginia Postrel wannabes? I like Sullivan, but I don't think he was an inventive leader in 'blogging.

And also this strange phrase:
", a fairly trivial Net-based application..."
What does trivial mean here? The rest of the article seems pretty complimentary to Blogger. Maybe he meant 'simple'...
posted by evanizer at 10:21 AM on February 5, 2002

epersonae: did you ever pick up that doris lessing book from the library? and, assuming that you read it, what did you think?
posted by mlang at 10:23 AM on February 5, 2002

Good Post, Alball. Dvorak is a cynic, who is just getting up to speed with all those other mainliners who have recently 'discovered' blogging. Whether they think blogging is like Karoke, or the latest phase of CB Radio exhibitionism is all about where they are coming from and the sample size they have seen. The good thing is that the word is getting out that there is more online than ebay and orbitz.
posted by Mack Twain at 11:42 AM on February 5, 2002

The BBC article is, indeed, better, Rory. Though that must be the thinnest-ever justification for running a picture of Woody Allen.
posted by BT at 11:47 AM on February 5, 2002

What does trivial mean here?

When you're talking about applications, this usually means "not complicated" or "not requiring a lot of computer resources." I think.
posted by kirkaracha at 12:05 PM on February 5, 2002

Guh, that Newsday article is rife with errors. Do they have a fact-checking department there? Evan lives in Silicon Valley? Pyra got a "pile of venture capital funds"? Everyone left when the dot-com phenomenon "went south"? That's some funny stuff. And I hadn't realized Matt Drudge made the format famous.

posted by megnut at 1:35 PM on February 5, 2002

FWIW, I don't think Newsday has a reputation for being one of the better local papers in this area. Their readers aren't overly concerned with accuracy except in the sports reporting, from what i"ve seen.
posted by anildash at 1:48 PM on February 5, 2002

It's amazing that Dvorak got paid to write that. I kept wanting it to go somewhere or do something, but it was not to be. A highschool freshman could easily have done a better job.
posted by Ptrin at 6:42 PM on February 5, 2002

<off-topic reply>
y'know, I picked it up, but just couldn't get into it. (didn't help that my library's copy was slightly damaged, either.)

I'll probably try it again, tho.
<off-topic reply>

(very funny, kafkaesque.)
posted by epersonae at 9:13 PM on February 5, 2002

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