Mary Branscombe (marypcb) wrote,
Mary Branscombe

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tell me what you think I'm saying

I've been having a discussion with sbisson recently (not quite as long and involved as our 3-hour DRM argument or repeated as often as my iPod rant, but getting there) about the nature of blogs. It's not that I don't think that the tools that enable blogging as we know it aren't an interesting development. It's not that I don't think that the structure of a blog, with many small, self-contained pieces on one page isn't important. It's not that I don't enjoy 'one-way' blogs where you read regular updates and send your comments by mail or add them in a general discussion forum that's not directly connected to the post you're reading.

It's just that those things aren't enough to make me feel that a blog is anything different from a column in a one-person magazine or any other kind of personal Web page. But when you add in the ability for comments to become part of the blog rather than peripheral entities, I think you get something new. The discussion, the community, becomes part of the blog in an odd mixture of Web publishing and newsgroups and paper APAs. What you get is, to my mind, quite different from a star columnist or a name writer pubbing their ish, and I like this column from the Guardian about why conversation is the key to a worthwhile blog, whoever writes it.
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