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Sunday, March 14, 2004

Dirty Little Secrets of Blogging?! 

Joe sent me a link to an article on blogging titled "Blog No More", which was originally posted by Frank Catalano in his blog Byte Me online. (Catalano uses his blog to market his consulting business.)

I don't get Catalano's point. Whose dirty secrets is he talking about? Must be his: 1) clearly he's an egomaniac who gets off by imagining more and more people reading his exalted words, and 2) he thinks that's why other people blog! When he says "They're mostly reading blogs of friends," can't he imagine that they're mostly writing blogs for friends too?!

I've read a lot of blogs and I'm sure that my motives for blogging are far more common among the 2-7% of us blogging, than are Catalano's motives for blogging.

Here, for Catalano, are 5 very clean little secrets about blogging:

  • Blogging beneficially changes my real-time interaction with the people who read my blog (especially those whose blogs I read).
  • Writing in a public forum, even with a TINY public, changes the way I write.
  • The level of logic required in public writings alters how I think in ways that writing in a 'flimsily locked diary' can't.
  • I really don't want a huge audience – geez, I freak out when a former boyfriend reads this shit! – and I'm sure as hell not going to spend time finding "the proper audience" for what I write.
  • And, excuse me you ass, but writing "without third-party validation" is very much writing. As a matter of fact, I would argue it is moreso: I know of too many published writers who are unhappy with what commercial third-parties have done to their writing.

If you want some real secrets about writing, Mr. Catalano, let's talk about the dysfunction of that third-party validation machine that you're so enthralled with – all the ways it is a sham, what miniscule percent of 'legitimately' published authors make any money at all, how the mechanism churns out redundant drivel aimed at a mass market. Sorry, but the commercial publishing business – your almighty third-party validation – is not unlike commercial recording labels. The truth is, the internet is changing the way we do business, and the way we write – thank you very much.

[Update: Official apology.]


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