Parasites vs. Symbiotics


Blog: The word "blog" is literally shorthand for "boring;" a vulgar, overused word that strikes your ear with the dull thud of a cudgel to the soft spot of a child. It's an abbreviation used by journalism drop outs to give legitimacy to their shallow opinions and amateur photography that seems to be permanently stuck in first draft hell. Looking in the archives of the blogs, one would expect someone who has been at it for years to slowly hone their craft and improve their writing and photographs, since it's usually safe to assume that if someone does something long enough, he or she will eventually not suck at it. Even with lowered expectations, you'll get a shotgun blast of disappointment in your face.

See, now normally I'd just be all pomo and ironic and laugh nervously and pretend I thought that you were refreshing and saying the things we all secretly thought. The problem is, that after due consideration, I've decided I don't think youre funny. And I've decided that you're not refreshing.

As I said a few months ago, I'm tired of the idea that one has to say something negative in order to be creative. And I'm even more tired of people who are indiscriminate enough to slag off whole genres, or worse: media, because they have had one or two bad experiences with it. Yes, there are bad blogs. Yes, there are bad comic books. Yes, there are bad Hollywood films. That doesn't mean that the whole medium/genre/format is somehow rotten. And frankly, I've grown tired of people who pull off a tired joke at the expense of the many, many people who are actually working - creatively, not parasitically - within it. Making sweeping judgements, even in jest, is by definition wrong, and even worse: it's just not funny.

You're more the literary equivalent to a parasite, where most bloggers try to be more symbiotic. That is to say: not just trying to bleed someone dry by feeding off their creativity for your own gain and amusement, but actually doing something with or about what is happening in culture.

(Though I do agree with you that the term blog is phonetically ugly. Like the president of the ALA once said, it sounds like something you'd find stuck in a drain.)


Blogger Lone Ranger said...

I agree that there a some bad blogs out there. But how much effort does it take to click your mouse? I try to sample at least 200 blogs a day. They contain some of the worst poetry, some of the most misguided thoughts, some stupidity I never thought possible, but other than the commercial advertising blogs, I've never found them boring. (And Asian kids can never be cool. The harder they try, the sillier they look.) How can any person with a brain possibly be bored when they have the known knowledge of the universe at their fingertips? All I had as a kid was some old National Geographics in my Grandma's attic, a shortwave radio and all of God's creation outside my doorstep, and I can't recall EVER being bored. The kids these are sophisticated to the point of being useless.

July 24, 2005 9:31 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I agree about the bad blogs. There are a lot of 'em dangling out there. And ditto with the bad poetry and bad prose, some of it is so bad, sometimes I can't even laugh about it anymore. Maddox's post is a tad bit myopic though, but I do agree with most of his points.

I agree somewhat with the ranger's comment on the Asian kids, even though I'm Asian myself, but I'm pretty sure he's referring to most of the myspace and xanga nonsense, or any blog with an Asian kid who puts up a self-advertising front. These are beyond annoying.

July 27, 2005 5:23 am  
Blogger Gaute said...

He's using broad strokes, sure, but I understand his frustration; Blog has become a buzzword, and an especially annoying one at that, since most people raving on about it have no clue as to why it's as revolutionary as they claim it is, and many journalists covering blogging are seemingly unable to distinguish between a web log and a web page.

July 27, 2005 10:35 am  
Blogger mrtn said...

Sure, I can understand his frustration, but there's a difference between nursing a private frustration, and taking the time and effort to make a web page airing these frustrations. Especially when he doesn't take the time and effort to first check his prejudices against reality.

July 27, 2005 12:16 pm  
Blogger Gaute said...

Bet he wishes he had a blog to post his rants on. Oh, the irony...

July 28, 2005 12:19 pm  
Blogger Kristoffer Jul-Larsen said...

Hilarious crap: http://pinkpainters.blogspot.com/

August 04, 2005 10:56 pm  

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