Wednesday, June 28, 2006

blogging for dialogue?

Alan Jacobs writes in Books and Culture about his disillusionment with the blog form as a source for intellectual dialogue.  He rightly suggests that the form that privileges new posts cuts off the potential for dialogue in comments – readers don’t check back for more discussion, and move on within a week.

Although this matches my experience, I think also that he overlooks the possibility of continued discussion between blogs.  Of invoking (with links) old posts of the initial poster and of others within a blog community.  And  maybe this can only work within a small community, and not on popular blogs like daily kos where the regular commenters number more than a dozen.  But I think Jacobs is a bit overly-dismissive.  Or perhaps I am overly zealous about the possibility of blogging for intellectual growth.


shellbell said...

yeah, I think you're right in saying that there is still much possibility for communication to stay open among small communities who are intentional in keeping those conversations open and going.

Blogging is an interesting thing, isn't it? I never thought I would enter the "craze," but lo-and-behold, here I am.... I'm new at the blogging thing and therefore do not have a lot of people visiting my blog and commenting (which makes it very easy for me to keep conversations going when someone actually does comment!), but I have to admit, I started a blog for my own good - so I would be forced to think more deeply about the things going on around me and their importance/significance in my daily life. It is definitely intellectually stimulating to me even if other people aren't participating in the discussion.

bethany said...

good point shelly. Jacobs (and I) forgot that blogs really DO lend themselves well to initial reflection by a poster and response from an audience - even if it's not sustained dialogue, it's a start that could lead to more sustained thought. Discussion in person (!) longer writing, etc.

Huisj said...

I clearly only blog when I feel it will stimulate intellectual growth through dialogue and critical self reflection. This is very evident in my stunning June 15 entry.