Tuesday, May 10, 2005

So I'm Talking To My Mom On Mothers Day......


And the conversation went a little something like this-

Mom: "So, I read in the Boston Globe about the big ole Blog Conference in Nashville this weekend. I'm assuming you went, right?"

Me: "Actually, no. I had planned on it, but changed my mind around Friday night before deciding whether or not to go the big welcome party shindig downtown. For some reason, I just wasn't feelin' it."

Mom: "Explain."

Me: "Lately, I get the feeling that blogs are less about being interesting corners of the WWW, and more about how much money you can get people to pay you to advertise crap on your blog. I don't write this blog to make money, and I certainly don't expect the eight people who read it to start a political movement. I write it because it's fun, and I like voicing my opinions and thoughts to see the reactions from people. I could care less if anyone takes it seriously or not- and I for damn sure am not going to take it too seriously either."

Mom: "I see. I think I understand."

Me: "I don't want to vilify those that do want to turn it in to a source of income either. To each his own, which is what makes blogs interesting in the first place. I just am getting a little tired of people who take themselves WAY TOO FRICKIN' seriously because they write stories on the web. Blogs are an important tool for disseminating news and stories from any angle, as well as opinion thereof but that doesn't mean that Newspapers are about to go out of business either. I just didn't feel like sitting around a room full of people hoping to catch a ride on the hype express. Funny that most people read about blogs- IN NEWSPAPERS."

The satirical site Something Awful had a story that put these things in to perspective a couple of months ago-

Shut Up About Blogs Already

"No matter where you go, no matter what news site you read, no matter what television channel you switch to, no matter what radio station is on, we, the American people, are constantly reminded about this exciting newfangled device called "a blog." The news media has adopted the word "blog" as their "horribly annoying catchphrase of the decade," opting to drone on and on about such an exciting topic nonstop until the Internet decides to take its own life. Blogs turn any average drooling idiot into a seasoned news reporter! Blogs bring the world together and share intimate moments with complete strangers, most of which who are probably masturbating! Blogs allow fair and balanced news reports by offering both sides of the political spectrum equal chances to make up lies and get away with it! Blogs can cure cancer! Blogs will colonize space! Blogs will transform the human race into a hyper intelligent race of androids able to travel through time and shoot laser beams from their eyes! What on Earth can't blogs do? BLOGS BLOGS BLOGS!

The simple reason the term "blog" is on every suit-and-tie-wearing idiot's mouth is simple: the media wants to be hip. It doesn't matter if they're recycling Internet crap which hit its peak popularity in the mid-1990s, it's news to them as long as the other networks have failed to thoroughly beat the term into the ground and pile drive it into the shattered shores of painful overexposure. Hey, have you guys heard about this crazy "Bubba Rubb" dude? What about "all of your bases?" How about this hilarious site called E-Bam's World which posts tons of funny original content like "man falls off motorcycle #742" and "Michael Jackson soundboard #1124"? The news media is perpetually five years behind the Internet's popularity tide, and by the time local news channels begin reporting on the latest uproarious new digital trend sweeping the AIM chatrooms of prepubescent America, we've already suffocated and buried it under a pile of "hello my future girlfriends" and "Tunac Tun Tuns." And don't even get me started on Jimmy Kimmel.

So here's a little tip for all the vigilante 60-year old news reporters prowling websites on their son's dialup AOL account: don't bother. I have yet to discover a single television or radio show able to report on the Internet without spewing the same tired cliched crap every other television and radio show has dutifully reported on for the past six months. I guess it's pretty sad that the Internet, by far the most factually incorrect, illiterate, immature, idiotic form of communication in the history of mankind, seems to be setting the trends which other media outlets vigorously pursue. Please do the world a favor, news media: stop latching onto an Internet concept or pseudo-celebrity and then promoting the hell out of it in a futile attempt to trick the world into thinking you guys are hip to these super-bitchin' techno trends on the k-rad information superhighway. Leave us lonely and pathetic Internet wretches alone with our endless rolling sea of one-hit wonders, tragically unhip anti-celebrities, and cutting edge software which stopped cutting years ago. This crap is bad enough on the Internet; the last thing we need is to see it plastered all over our newspapers and television screens."

Look, I mean no ill will towards those that attended the blog conference, and I am proud that Belmont University stepped up and by all accounts offered an excellent venue to host this conference. I imagine that there were some interesting points discussed, and the sense of camaraderie was surely electrifying, just like it was at the Jackson's Blogger meet up last month. BOO YA!

Just wasn't feelin' it folks, is all.

My one regret?

I wanted to meet John Cox, of Cox and Forkum fame, because I have truckloads of respect for those two and every time I get to have a few beers with Allen Forkum, we tend to get in to some great conversations. That I do regret.

The rest? Meh. To be honest, sleeping in on Saturday just sounded more enjoyable than the conference. Again, I'm not ripping those who attended, and I'm glad that people came out in support and what not. There's just so many times you can have an argument about the "influence of the blogosphere and the effects on the mainstream". After that, it's well, boring to me.

I'll just stay over here in my corner of the web freaking out about asteroids 'n stuff.

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