Megan Taylor

front-end dev, volunteacher, news & data junkie, bibliophile, Flyers fan, sci-fi geek and kitteh servant

Another word for blog

This is a conversation I had recently with Kyle Mitchell, who works in the Gainesville Sun’s online department.

Me: so how come the blog cms sucks so much?

KM: cause they got a cheap tool

Me: wordpress is free. and better. heck, i think drupal is free. and, better.

KM: hey, i keep away from the whole ‘blog’ thing entirely

Me: why is that? i think thats where online news is heading.
Me: along with serious flash and multimedia packages

KM: as far as i’m concerned, it’s B.S.

Me: explain

KM: a blog is nothing more than a column. if you write a column, call it a column, and don’t lump it in the same category as livejournal

KM: it takes away all the integrity of what you write

Me: wrong
Me: a blog brings the writer and the audience closer and allows them to participate in a conversation with the writer
Me: the way citizen jou and UGC is going, thats important.

KM: it’s easy enough to allow comments on an article. but you don’t have to slap the ‘blog’ label on everything and make it look stupid
KM: ‘blog’ is too widely used a term to be functional when you want people to trust the information contained therein

Me: that, maybe i agree with. theres a huge difference b/t lj and myspace “blogs” and “blogs” written by journalists, professionals and experts
Me: unfortunately, we can’t always pick our own terminology

KM: blog is just another buzzword that people are latching on to. soon enough, they will realize that you need separation in order to get the credibility.

Me: i think people have come to think of any periodically updated and chronologically organized site, that allows interaction between readers and writers, as a blog

KM: exactly my point.

Me: and you get credibility by being transparent in the way you write
Me: the “blogs” that are written by 14 yr olds will be obviously not as reliable or interesting as a “blog” written by a foreign correspondent
Me: the blogs i see that have high readership also quote sources and explain where they got information and how they arrived at a conclusion

KM: but they’re still in the same category. that same 14 year old would never have a column, and everyone knows that, lending the column more credibility.
KM: call it a “newslog” and you’re getting somewhere

Me: well, the only way to create that distinction is for the newspapers to start using it on their websites
Me: and they don’t even have a grasp on the idea behind a blog, much less creating distinctions of terminology

KM: so, until there’s an understanding of what needs to be done, i’m not going to join in the masses who use the word ‘blog’ just because it sounds hi-tech

Me: so i should have asked “why does the newslog cms suck so much?”

Mmmm, buzz words. Dearly loved by failing bureaucracies, feared and loathed by those who understand the technology.

7 Comments

  1. “Blog” is hardly a buzzword, despite what your friend in the online department says, unless a word that’s been around for at least six years to describe a way of easily publishing information to the Internet qualifies as a “buzzword.” And he’s far from original in the arguments he’s making – despite the fact that they’ve been constantly demolished by thoughtful “bloggers” for several years – including journalists. indeed, I see these arguments trotted out by every tired journalist/curmudgeon who wants to distance him/herself from the unwashed masses of people creating their own content.

    It’s sad, really, that someone who works in the online world is so disdainful of a significant portion of what makes it vibrant – 14-year-olds and all.

  2. “Blog” is hardly a buzzword, despite what your friend in the online department says, unless a word that’s been around for at least six years to describe a way of easily publishing information to the Internet qualifies as a “buzzword.” And he’s far from original in the arguments he’s making – despite the fact that they’ve been constantly demolished by thoughtful “bloggers” for several years – including journalists. indeed, I see these arguments trotted out by every tired journalist/curmudgeon who wants to distance him/herself from the unwashed masses of people creating their own content.

    It’s sad, really, that someone who works in the online world is so disdainful of a significant portion of what makes it vibrant – 14-year-olds and all.

  3. Bryan – I recognized the argument, the problem is that Kyle is only 24. That is why I posted it. It’s not just the older generation of journalists, Kyle recently graduated from the same program I’m currently in. And yet, I get it (or like to think I do) and he, clearly, doesn’t.

  4. Bryan – I recognized the argument, the problem is that Kyle is only 24. That is why I posted it. It’s not just the older generation of journalists, Kyle recently graduated from the same program I’m currently in. And yet, I get it (or like to think I do) and he, clearly, doesn’t.

  5. OMG! That makes it even more tragic! I’ve seen that attitude among young print reporters, but didn’t know it exists among online types as well. Wow.

  6. OMG! That makes it even more tragic! I’ve seen that attitude among young print reporters, but didn’t know it exists among online types as well. Wow.

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