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Media

February 18, 2005

Blogging Sucks. Visit My Blog

Contradictions at the Christian Science Monitor.

Carl Bialik

A brilliant bit of self-promotion was hidden in a meandering Christian Science Monitor column. Jerry Lanson, a journalism professor at Emerson College, complains that no one is reading his blog, and makes an anecdotal, clumsy, personal argument that computers are weakening communities:

Blogging, I've discovered, is about as stimulating as singing to my refrigerator. The echo of my words dissolves quickly into silence.

It may be that these words simply bore anyone dropping by. But I suspect the lack of traffic to my new blog has more to do with the fact that there are now millions of bloggers out there, pouring their hearts out ... for the most part to themselves. And as they—no, we—spend more hours in front of computers, we take one more step in estranging ourselves from what's left of local community.

Lanson writes about his mid-'50s Long Island surburban childhood, "Fights occasionally broke out, and sometimes nasty ethnic slurs got thrown around. Life was far from perfect. But it had a pulse. " Today, in Lexington, Mass., he can't find a card game to join and some guy with a snowblower didn't offer to help an old man across the street. Oh, what we have lost. Case closed.

Here's the self-promotion: At the bottom of the column, the Christian Science Monitor is kind enough to link to Lanson's blog. And even though I didn't like the column much, I still clicked on the link. It's not bad, though a bit strident and not really a blog. More like a weekly column published using blogging software. It'll be interesting to see if Lanson's traffic now goes up, and that he no longer feels like his words are dissolving into silence.

Carl Bialik

Carl Bialik, a co-founder of Gelf, is a writer for FiveThirtyEight.







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- Media
- posted on Mar 11, 05
Gary Drucker

Maureen Dowd and James Guckert

With respect to your comments about Ms. Dowd, while it may not be relevant to Mr. Guckert's option to be a political PR hack that he also is a gay escort pose-er, as well as a journlist-poseur, it is completely relevant to ridicule an administration, which has made hay out of anti-gay reaction, that it gives day passes to a rightwing journalist shill who is also a gay escort. This is where the satire is, not against Guckert's sexual predilections.

Gary Drucker


Article by Carl Bialik

Carl Bialik, a co-founder of Gelf, is a writer for FiveThirtyEight.

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