Archive for June, 2005
Just an FYI that I can’t respond to email right now… Just moved apartments (to a, slightly, more long-term one), and the ISP “can’t figure out why email won’t send”. They’ve “assigned a senior support person” to the task… But, it’ll take them 3-4 days to get back to me.
Earlier this week, Robert Scoble nearly decided to stop blogging. In fact, he may decide to do so yet.
My comments are down. Dave Winer posted this morning that he’s under a denial-of-service attack. Sigh. On the other hand, I’m getting a lot done. It’s like a little vacation from comments. Maybe I should turn them off permanently?
I’m not even going to take a swipe at Robert still relying on someone else’s server being up in order to support comments (and it being down for several days at a time, several times this year). It happens to even the best of us, so fair enough.
But, here is the “king of blogs”, featured in all kinds of magazines, writing his own book on the topic (to be fair, Shel‘s probably doing 95% of the writing)… And he’s thinking of removing comments entirely from his blog.
Blogs are all about conversation. Sure, some folk have comments turned off (more and more A-Listers in fact, which is ironic), but if you aren’t having a conversation when you’re posting… What’s the point? Robert’s solution to this is to require users to register at Channel 9 and discuss things there.
A Channel 9 user then asks Robert why he has a blog at all. His answer?
that would be cool, but I’ve worked for years to get tens of thousands of subscribers. So, not gonna do that anytime soon.
So, he doesn’t think blogging’s comments system is good enough, and the only reason he’d keep blogging is to keep his readership? Scoble, Scoble, Scoble… Do a redirect. C’mon now, you work at Microsoft and nobody’s told you that you could move servers, platforms, and domains and nobody reading your feed would notice?
For me the bigger issue here isn’t really that Scoble’s being a twat and not practicing what he preaches, it’s that some part of him thinks this’ll work. Instead of being able to go to Scoble’s site and comment, in the future, users will need to:
1. Read it in the feed 2. Click through to the page 3. Realize they want to talk about the topic 4. Go to Channel 9 5. Click on “Coffeehouse” (or will there be a new forum for Scoble’s comments?) 6. Find the thread that talks about the post in question (or, far more likely, simply start a new one, so there’ll be 3-5 threads for every Scoble post) 7. Register 8. Confirm registration 9. Post 10. Subscribe to XML feed of page so they can stay up to date on the “conversation”
Yeah. Much more streamlined. And conversational. I can imagine that Scoble won’t lose ANY commenters, nor will he lose readers.
I know I won’t jump through these hoops, and I’m not even sure I’ll stay subscribed if he goes this route.
Beyond that, this whole thought pattern bothers me, because it ties Scoble 100% to Microsoft and Channel 9. He’s no longer a blogger, he’s merely a gateway into the Channel 9 community. There are worse things to be, I suppose, but for someone who is (quite literally) writing the book on blogging to so completely give up on the concept is disheartening. The fact that he’ll likely argue (somehow) that this is a good evolution for blogging overall is disturbing.
I’m not sure when “what’s good for Scoble” got twisted up with “what’s good for blogging”, but it happened at some point, and I’m not sure there’s any going back.
Okay, now it’s time to actually try and enjoy my birthday ;-)
Note: This is probably the harshest post I’ve ever written. But, since Scoble’s comments are off, he rarely responds to email, is almost never on Skype or MSN and I won’t be seeing him for a few weeks, Technorati / PubSub searches are really the only way to get his attention these days. Those he watches like a hawk, so I know he’ll read this within a few hours, where it’d take days for him to find the email.
Update: Marc just pointed out to me that Scoble thinks a new tech he’s playing with (obviously it’s ultra super secret) will make comments obsolete “in a few months”. Maybe this means he’ll leave comments off for that long?
Side thought: Would I actually miss anything important any A-Lister said if I unsubscribed from them? In the beginning of blogging, these bloggers were really reflecting what the rest of blogging was saying, so they were a great way to stay up to date. These days, I’m wondering if the opposite isn’t true: if I could just read who I’m reading now and get the important things folk like Robert are saying.
I’ve been complaining about the current Ensight design for too long. I’ve been waiting to get 1000-2000$ together for a new design, but just haven’t been able to free up that much cash until now.
So, I figured I’d ask: does anyone want to work with me to redesign Ensight? You will (obviously) get credit as part of the template (feel free to make it prominent), as well as on the “About” page.
No pressure, just wondering.
Yes, there is such a thing, and Rick Mercer is undoubtedly one of the chapeens of the sport.
He’s now started blogging. No comments (yet). But maybe he’ll figure out that we all want to laugh along with him.