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Q: Metablogging ( Answered,   1 Comment )
Subject: Metablogging
Category: Computers > Internet
Asked by: hammerikaner-ga
List Price: $20.00
Posted: 02 May 2003 23:50 PDT
Expires: 01 Jun 2003 23:50 PDT
Question ID: 198749
I'm looking for the best examples of metablogging within the blogging
community. I want a sampling of the history of blogging as it happened
from the eyes of the well-known bloggers, but also (and this is the
important part) I want the history of blogging through the lens of the
everyday blogger, the people who would not be generally considered
well known or one who may blog primarily for his friends, who may also
be bloggers.

Links to specific posts are a must. Looking for users of Blogger,
Radio Userland, Movable Type, and other publishing services. Brief
descriptions of the blogger's focus or biography might be a good way
to organize the links.

Looking for a sampling of at least 10 different sites and 10-20
individual posts. Emphasis on the social experience of blogging rather
than technical aspect of it.

Question could also be filed under "Relationships and Society >
Subject: Re: Metablogging
Answered By: j_philipp-ga on 03 May 2003 01:51 PDT
Hello Hammerikaner,

Here are some of the best examples of metablogging:

------------ Blog: William Gibson

Science-Fiction writer, author of cyberpunk sci-fi Neuromancer.

Blogging vs. Writing - Friday, May 02, 2003

"Blogging seems to me to be as undemanding an activity, however
congenial, as "writing" is demanding. Blogging is conversational,
literally informal, and seldom even comes close to engaging the
compositional gear-train required for even a brief essay, let alone
for an extended work of prose fiction."

Someone Wonders - Tuesday, March 11, 2003

"While I'm on the topic of mediated personae, something that came up
during that CBC taping, last night (for me, anyway) was the idea that
blogging (or even posting to fora) represents the democratization of
the mediated persona. Literally anyone can have one, now, or several."

------------ Blog/ Article: Andrew Sullivan

A Blogger Manifesto - Why online weblogs are one future for journalism
- February 24, 2002

"... the phenomenon has reached a critical mass - a tipping point, if
you will. The number of "blogs" is growing by tens of thousands a
month, and Blogger itself boasts of over 150,000 users. In January,
41,000 new blogs were created on Blogger. The vast majority of them
are quirky, small, often solipsistic enterprises, and reading them is
like reading someone else's diary over their shoulder. The pioneer -
back in 1994 - was one Justin Hall whose "Links From the Underground"
blog detailed, among other things, his passion for sex and drugs."

------------ Blog: Slashdot

News for nerds. Stuff that matters.

Weblogs and Local News?

"I am the 'computer guy' for a local paper. We are looking into a
revamp of our site, and, being a /. observer for many years, I see the
slashdot format as useful for active, up-to-date local content as
well. With the word getting arround about the Berkeley Graduate School
of Journalism and USC's Annenberg School for Communication offering
blogging classes I have some justification. I was looking for input on
examples and justification."

------------ Blog: Anders Jacobsen

... because the Internet changes your life!

Blogging hits critical mass - February 16, 2003

"One thing seems clear; Blogging, having long time been a kind of
egaliterian, independent-style form of publishing is going mainstream.
Big time! We'll just wait and see what happens and how some new and
old companies will profit from it. Most importantly I think it is a
great step in the direction of people to get their voices out and

------------ Blog/ Comments: Metafilter

The it's okay to like.

Current State of Blogging - February 26, 2003

"He's definitely got a point when it comes to the variety of
information on most blogs... sometimes it seems I can visit 20 blogs
and see the exact same source articles over and over again."

What's a blog? Where's it goin'? - February 3, 2003

"Yes, blogs are going mainstream. Will businesses discover uses for
blogs & blog software? Will (mobile-phone) "moblogging" catch on?"

Laurel Wellman thinks blogging is dumb - July 2, 2002

"I didn't get a very strong 'blogging is dumb' sense out of the
article. It was more like 'blogs are being used as an excuse to talk
when one has nothing to say'. Whatever you think of the article, ya
gotta love bits like this:

'Hi! Whassup??? Nothin' new around here, just napping -- :-D!!! Going
to the mall with Jenna!! LOL!!!!!!!'"

NPR's Fresh Air attempted to introduce its listeners to blogging -
December 11, 2001

"Linguist and commentator Geoff Nunberg says 'The only thing bloggers
have in common is that they have a lot of time on their hands and an
exhibitionist streak.'"

HTML, Nielsen, and Blogging - September 30, 2000

"Jakob Nielsen says "to take the Internet to the next level, users
must begin posting their own material ... the vast wasteland of
Geocities confirms this. Giving users a home-page editing program does
not turn them into good writers." Meg takes Nielsen to task: "his
recommended approach is crazy ...Why bog kids down with HTML?" Blogs,
of course, are her solution. But for some folks this simply doesn't
add up. Saying kids shouldn't learn HTML because Blogger exists is
like saying they shouldn't learn to add because calculators exist."

------------ Articles:

Founded in November 1995 by David Talbot.

Hollyblog (By Alisa Weinstein) - Feb. 24, 2003

"Are movie bloggers part of weblogging's natural evolution, or just a
sign that another cool Net thing has been co-opted?"

Use the blog, Luke (by Steven Johnson) - May 10, 2002

"The collective future of blogs lies not in dethroning the New York
Times -- but in becoming a force that can make sense of the Web's
infinity of links. (...)

Nearly eight years after Justin Hall uploaded his first hypertext
diary entry, weblogging has finally hit the mainstream. Everyone seems
to have a published opinion on this not-so-new new thing, and if the
attention seems a little belated, it's not undeserved."

Much ado about blogging (By Scott Rosenberg) - May 10, 2002

"Is it the end of journalism as we know it? Or just 6 zillion writers
in search of an editor? Neither."

------------ Blog/ Articles: Slate (MSNBC)

Are Weblogs Changing Our Culture? (Andrew Sullivan, Kurt Andersen) -
Wednesday, September 4, 2002

"But at a more profound level, I think the real power will be
unleashed by unknown writers finding a way to get their work in front
of readers more easily than ever before."

------------ Blog/ Articles: Justin Hall

Links like life - 2.9.1996

"As best I see it, this is the least alienating incarnation of this
medium. No distance, no [stupid] objectivity; I'm telling stories
about my life, you can either take it or leave it. I'm not going to
tell you you have to read it to be hip, I'm not saying I'm the
authority on anything but what I been through."

Publishing Empowerment - Decentralizing media for human potential -
June 13, 1995

"This technology promotes decentralization. Force feeding the net
public heaping spoonfuls of what you think is tasty will fail - even
if people have a choice of spoons. People want to talk to eachother,
if they are going to read something, they want it to be vibrant and
heartfelt. Even now, large media has a hard time with both of those -
in the future, on the net, they will grow lifeless and useless faster
than ever."

Why the web? - 1995

"The web is an opportunity to make good our fifteen megabytes of fame.
Because web pages encompass any existing media, you can forge your
site in your own image. You can be unique, because there are no
expectations. Most people set up personal home pages out of nothing
other than love and curiousity."

------------ Blog/ Articles: Rebecca's Pocket

By Rebecca Blood.

Weblogs: a history and perspective - 7 september 2000

"Suddenly a community sprang up. It was easy to read all of the
weblogs on Cameron's list, and most interested people did. Peter
Merholz announced in early 1999 that he was going to pronounce it
'wee-blog' and inevitably this was shortened to 'blog' with the weblog
editor referred to as a 'blogger.'

At this point, the bandwagon jumping began. More and more people began
publishing their own weblogs."

Weblog Ethics - 2002

"Weblogs are the mavericks of the online world. Two of their greatest
strengths are their ability to filter and disseminate information to a
widely dispersed audience, and their position outside the mainstream
of mass media. Beholden to no one, weblogs point to, comment on, and
spread information according to their own, quirky criteria.

The weblog network's potential influence may be the real reason
mainstream news organizations have begun investigating the phenomenon,
and it probably underlies much of the talk about weblogs as
journalism. Webloggers may not think in terms of control and
influence, but commercial media do."

------------ Articles: BlockStar

Timeline of early Blogs

"Like with the start of many things, early bloggers did not have a
name for what they were doing. While it took some time for the genre
and the name to develop, blogging has been around since the begining
of the internet. Below is a history of early blogs in timeline form."

------------ Articles: Dave Winer (

Dave Winer is the creator of "Scripting News" weblog, one of the
earliest blogs.

The History of Weblogs

"Weblogs are often-updated sites that point to articles elsewhere on
the web, often with comments, and to on-site articles. A weblog is
kind of a continual tour, with a human guide who you get to know.
There are many guides to choose from, each develops an audience, and
there's also comraderie and politics between the people who run
weblogs, they point to each other, in all kinds of structures, graphs,
loops, etc."

------------ Articles: Mark Philips

Blogging as Cubism - 2002

"Have you read Kafka's "diaries"? These notebooks are more complex and
interesting than their commonplace title might imply. He'd switch
between a conventional diary form, sketches for stories, and complete
short works of fiction. Their editing seems to deny inner structure.
But they read with a fascinating dreamlike texture.

To my ear this sounds made for blogging. If you begin with the blog as
an arbitrary narrative space, you can switch between diary, fiction,
essay, book review, grocery list, or any other formal possibility
which suits your thematic purpose at that instant."


I hope this selection helps!

Search terms:
blog blogging blogging blogging blogging blogging kausfiles blogging

Request for Answer Clarification by hammerikaner-ga on 03 May 2003 10:56 PDT
I think this is on the right track, but I am looking more for blogging
"through the lens of the everyday blogger." Andrew Sullivan may be
articulate, but he has some pretty, well... predefined views of
everything. I'm looking for talk about bloggers by bloggers in the
trenches (i.e. the kind of folks that have blogspot accounts, etc.).
Also, looking for the "social experience" rather than blogging as a
threat to traditional journalism / media.

Clarification of Answer by j_philipp-ga on 04 May 2003 00:30 PDT
Hello again Hammerikaner,

Thanks for asking for a clarification. This time, I focussed the
search narrowly on personal blogger views by querying Google with
strings like the following: "i think blogging" "blogging to me is"

Here are the most interesting results compiled from that research:

The blogosphere as coffeehouse (Beauty of Gray by Douglas Turnbull) -
May 17, 2002

"There has been a lot written, both on blogs themselves and in the
more mainstream media, about the blogging phenomenon. For the most
part, the writings have centered on blogging’s relationship to
existing print media and punditry, which is understandable considering
the many similarities. However, I’d like to suggest a different
comparison--I think blogging is the modern day equivalent to the old
Viennese coffee houses of the early 20th century.

Those coffeehouses served as the center for public intellectual
discourse. Writers, thinkers, and other intellectuals would gather
there, where they would read the papers (all the coffeehouses would
have subscriptions to all the papers) and discuss the issues of the
day. Similarly, here on the internet, bloggers surf the papers,
linking interesting articles and posting thoughts about them. E-mail
and comments sections render the medium interactive, as well."

Small Pieces: The Gang Blog - 2002-06-08

"I think blogging is inciting people to capture epiphanies, images,
memories that might otherwise have gotten away. But I don't
necessarily think this need occur in the form of a re- or pre-hearsal
with an audience in mind. One of the best things to come out of it for
me, anyway, is the experience of reading across a bunch of blogs and
gradually forming a perception or observation which is partly based on
that reading, and partly on ideas or insights that might have formed
years ago, but only now seem to find a venue for delivery. That's sort
of what blogging does - deliver one of thoughts, memories, etc. that
otherwise might have languished for want of venue and impetus. Don't
you dare agree with this!" -- Tom Matrullo

WebSense (by Scott Knowles) - June 17, 2002

"I think blogging and other forms of C2C communications (...) are the
future of "marketing." (...) And going back to that stat where only
10% of people trust internet advertising, I think customers are
looking for some kind of communication that is lower in the bullshit
and higher in real value. As marketers we need to facilitate this
marketing and ensure its integrity and honesty is upheld above
anything else (including -- and don't jump -- negative commentary)."

The Blog with the Unpronounceable Name - September 21, 2002

"As someone who has designed online communications systems for most of
his life -- I created a BBS in 1981 before I even knew what a BBS was
-- I'm approaching this blogging phenomenon with a spirit of avid
exploration. (...)

Blogs seem to be the ultimate extension of this tendency: everybody
gets to be sysop.

I don't think that's the whole story, though. I think blogging was
kick-started by the unpleasantness of messaging on the net. On USENET
you'd run into horrid flame-wars and this discouraged a lot of people
from participating. (...)

I'm still not entirely comfortable with the idea of blogging, though.
I'm reminded of C.S. Lewis's vision of hell as a landscape of
isolated, single-occupancy houses that keep getting further and
further away from each other. Whereas all of the online communications
systems I've designed or worked with in the past emphasized the
gestalt, blogging seems inherently designed to put people into their
own little boxes."

Wendyism In Its Own - May 18, 2002

"I think blogging makes me feel better because it gives me a sense of
revelation about myself. I realized through blogging that I have no
right to act so critical, opinionated and self-righteous in front of
others. Who am I to judge people on their actions when I will probably
act the same way as them if I were ever put in their position? (...) I
shouldn't criticize others and be so self-righteous because I am no
better than them."

Brian's Blog (by Brian Nave) - January 25, 2003

"I think blogging will change the way I use computers because before
this I really did not like making web pages to publish things on the
net because it took too long. Now with web blogging I can just simply
write something really quickly and post it and allow all my colleges
and friends to see and share my ideas. I also think that web blogging
can assist a lot in the classroom setting because it can allow other
ways to consult the instructor."

Others said that blogging is an art, that it is a way to spread the
word of God, or that it will become the new social construct for
exchanging ideas. Even others said blogging was a bad idea for them
because now they stopped writing the diary.
And that it is inherently narcissistic at its core. One said that
blogging to him is simply an honest record of his feelings, as opposed
to a means of therapy. To some, blogging is a hobby, or "a pleasure
that goes beyond fun", while others think that weblogs can be a
powerful tool in education. "Gretchin lair, the goddess of small
things" wraps it up by writing: "I think blogging is a tremendous way
for me to organize my brain: it's what high fidelity refers to as
'autobiographical' organization. even if nobody else read it, i'd
still keep a blog." [1]

Hope this helps!

[1] Gretchin lair: the goddess of small things

Request for Answer Clarification by hammerikaner-ga on 04 May 2003 16:10 PDT
Still looking for more social interactions among bloggers rather than
individual experiences in "what blogging means to me." Bloggers
blogging about other bloggers both negatively and positively.
Warblogs? Blogrings?

Clarification of Answer by j_philipp-ga on 05 May 2003 03:26 PDT
Thanks for letting me know. I will do additional research.

Clarification of Answer by j_philipp-ga on 06 May 2003 01:35 PDT
Hi Hammerikaner,

Would you like to have articles specifically focussing on the social
interaction amongst bloggers? Or blogs talking about social issues
within the blog community? Or examples of bloggers talking badly about
other bloggers/ their blogs?

Could you please give me an example of what kind of answer or research
results you are seeking? E.g. a link to a blog or article with a
quote, the kind you're looking for.

Subject: Re: Metablogging
From: intotravel-ga on 04 May 2003 12:48 PDT
Hi, I don't know of any metablogs, apart from discussions involving
Andrew Sullivan! Many bloggers seem to be either libertarian (or
libertarian journalist) or computer people (employed by big companies
or freelances).

I've come across some love stories among webloggers. One announced the
demise of his love affair with another blogger by such words as 'there
is now a small but significant change on my Bio page'; it took me some
research (I was new to the blog) to discover that the page used to
include a girlfriend reference, and was now blank on the subject.

And a tragedy. There was an abrupt termination to the website of one
guy, who was pretty well liked online; with queries on his site,
asking 'where are you'. After a few weeks, his family posted a short
note about a funeral, with no reference to the cause of death. He had
posted a morbid Woody Allen joke, a couple of weeks before, so it's
possible to guess what happened.

Here are some other blogs I've come across:

I like the joke at the top of the page:

Confessions of a Porn Store Clerk:

How to Love a Geek Girl:

Wherein he takes responsibility (for making up stories about his
friends online)

Some bloggers say, "Take the Love Test".  Here's one reacton:

And there's also a literature around ex-girlfriends, "girlfriend
shrines" -- see page of links:

Oh, and I've just found a metablog:

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