March 11, 2002

Meta-Meta-Meta! Ben Sullivan leaps boldly

Meta-Meta-Meta! a diary, which --- well, if you must (blush, blush) --- others can glance in on? Or is it entertainment, produced mainly for others?

Mostly it's the latter; bloggers do it for the feedback their efforts generate, if only via Web stats. "You like me. You really like me!"

As such, it's within the rights of readers (be they Joe Public, or an intellectual challenger) to compliment or complain about what is written --- or left unaddressed. Wonderfully, because few bloggers depend on their sites for income, they have the luxury to agree, disagree, or completely ignore such feedback. It is akin to an unsigned band listening to or ignoring their fans. To which I'll only reiterate, unhelpfully, that the bloggings of a freelancer should be treated differently, for good and ill, than the way in which a full-time national columnist utilizes his/her prominent op-ed slot. Maybe I'm wrong about that. But I firmly believe I'm right in being hostile to judging writers' records in addressing this or that particular topic, weighed against various political spectrums and suspected motivations (though I've certainly been guilty of the practice). To use Ben's analogy, nothing irritates me more than a rock critic assuming they just know why a band has chosen to sound a certain way, or write a certain type of song. It almost always says more about the biases of the critic than those being criticized. It's also duller than a box of hair.

Posted by at March 11, 2002 02:01 PM
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