Sunday, February 26, 2006

McLaren: Logging Out of the Blogosphere

Leah McLaren wrote a commentary yesterday in indicating that she was done reading blogs, siting the poor quality of present-day blogs as her reason. And she has some interesting points to make.

McLaren says that most bloggers maintain poor writing quality, and those that can write have questionable motives, either a “commentator” trying to stir up public debate, or a truly good writer who invariably gets pulled into the establishment with opportunities for book deals or positions at major publications. As a result, McLaren posits, the era of independent commentary is dead. Bloggers write to hope they get noticed or to hear the sound of their own voice, McLaren thinks. I’m not so sure.

The article got me thinking about my motives for writing, and what I hope to gain from writing a blog. I mean, 3 months ago I had never heard of a blog, certainly hadn’t read on. Now it’s a part of my daily life. And I have a hectic life, why would I dedicate the time to it? I think my writing quality is at the least decent, and I’m not looking to be discovered or to get a job through my blog. So why would a guy like me dedicate the time to blogging.

To me, it’s the opportunity to have a voice in the world, to be heard. I believe I have some valid opinions, and some opinions that are not necessarily found commonly in the world on some issues (though perhaps not many). But how do I know if my thinking is valid or correct if I don’t have people refute my opinions, challenge me, critique me, and help me to define my own beliefs and views. To me, it’s a way of developing my own thoughts on issues that catch my eye, with the help of other bloggers.

Of course, it’s not just my own blog, and the comments made on it, which help me develop my views, but the blogs of others around the blogosphere. The issues they comment on help me define issues I should be looking at, and the posts of other bloggers give me insights into a wide variety of issues, including issues I have thought I was knowledgeable about.

How about you, why do you blog? Is McLaren right, is the bloggosphere either poor quality or commercialized? Or has the blogosphere become a place for anybody, even an average Joe like me, to have a voice in the world, as I believe? I guess it’s a question we all need to ask ourselves, but I mkust say I don’t believe the blogosphere is dead.

technorati tags: , , ,

Posted by Scottage at 2:45 PM / | |