Monday, June 12, 2006

The blog about the book about the blog about ...

OK - so we know about the books from the blogs eg Belle de Jour, the woman with the recipes and now - or sometime soon - Wandering Scribe. And then there are the Blookers, blogging equivalent of the Bookers. And there are books about particular blogs ...
But does anyone know if anyone's yet written a book about the whole psychology, sociology, ologyology of blogging? Why we do it, the formation of virtual communities, what works and what doesn't, the forum for stimulating debate, floating ideas and sharing skills and experiences, anonymity vs exposure ... the whole caboodle and its significance in the 21st Century.
It could also cover the Wandering Scribe phenomenon. Though I still believe her to be genuine it was fascinating watching the Princess Di effect unfold - people round the world experiencing extreme emotional responses to someone they don't know and are never likely to meet.
If it hasn't already been done, anyone up for it? It would need to be entertaining as well as thought-provoking and informative. Anyone with the writing skills (which is just about any of you) time, energy and inclination can have this one for free. I won't even charge commission or expect credit.
Though I wouldn't say no to a bar of chocolate ...

19 comments:

qaiz said...

Hi Debi,

Well, it just so happens that i was on a site recently and read about Ms. Lisa Coutant.. She's a consultant, an editor, and a lecturer.. And she recently gave a lecture and a blogger's-workshop..

Below are her contact links...

Lisa Coutant's blog:

http://www.blogger.com/profile/8554729

Blog Title: Penwriter's Conference

http://lisacoutant.blogspot.com/2006/05/pennwriters-conference.html -

enjoy!

M.
-------

Minx said...

Gosh this is huge Debi. I think people blog for a million different reasons. I will still stand by an old post of mine when I catagorised bloggers (very loosely)
1. The show off's
2. The passionates
3. The desperadoes
4. The creatives
5. The weird hobbyists
6. The intellectuals

I will also add...
7. The boring numpties and the whiners (come across quite a few lately whilst blogsurfing)

Minx said...

By the way, your clock is wrong, unless you are on continental time that is!!

skint writer said...

They do a cybercultures module on the journalism course in Cardiff University.

I did some research once on online forums like
urban75
, it's a massive online forum with a very active membership, leaning towards the urban anarchist alternatives.

If you google 'cyberculture' you'll come up with millions of results. I don't think blogging itself has had that much attention though.

Debi said...

Oooh - interesting stuff here. Though it doesn't look like I'm going to get my choccy. And I'd just been about to say it would need to be posh stuff - Belgian or Swiss. Nothing from Nestle though ...
Majnuun - LC's blog and her links look interesting. Thanks and good luck with the submission.
Minx - what category do we slot into then? I've never fitted into easy labelling - a fact I've learned to love though I know some people find it unsettling ...
And my clock's wrong. Oo-er. You're right - having said I can't always get on the computer I'm surprised you guessed I wasn't blogging at 2.59am. Does anyone mind if I don't try to work out how to correct it?
Skint - I like Urban75 - it's in my bookmarks and could well provide yet another major displacement activity.
No takers for writing the book then?
What about if it was some kinda collaborative effort with contributions from various blogging luminaries? I think it has potential ...

Minx said...

I don't feel qualified to write about this - much more Maxine's bag. I've only been at it a mere 10 weeks, still a babe!!
I don't like boxes or labelling either. I probably straddle my own list and lean most towards no5 and no7!!

Maxine said...

Obviously I have a sneaking, or not so sneaking, desire to write a book, as all of us allegedly do!
And since discovering the power of the Army of Davids, writing a book about blogging and bloggers has been in my mind! I am sure I and Debi and others are not alone in thinking about this.
Now where is that pen? And that time?!

Maxine said...

A weird hobbyist, eh, Minx?
Debi, if you have to fit into one of Minx's categories I would say you are a 4 (a creative) with a dash of 2 and 6.
As for the time clock thingy, I do highly recommend ignoring it!
I once tried to change mine and got really sucked into it (as I do with these tecchy things, I just get determined that I can sort it out and not be a "wet woman" over it) and I found that whatever I told blogger the time was it took not the slightest bit of notice. It also can't cope with the clocks changing at the solstices, so I would just leave it as-is and let everyone (except us) think you are a strange 3 a.m. poster!

Sharon J said...

Right now I want to be a boring numptie. That way nobody will expect me to say anything clever, which suits me perfectly. I just want to wander through a few days acting like a brainless zombie (did I say acting?) whilst eating lots of strong cheddar cheese.

Anyway, that cake's going to have to be prepared soon. I'm doing the revisions now.

crimeficreader said...

Minx - Aren't the whiners perhaps the passionates? They just can't enthuse about their topic without telling the rest of us, who don't exhibit their inner-felt passion, (to their minimal nth degree) that we are ignorant or lacking in some other way. But oh, the boring numpties are always the so boring numpties... Good call, Minx.

Now, I may be considered boring by many, but I'd like to think I am a "passionate", with a dollop of "weird hobbyist" thrown in, plus a smidgen of "creative" with an equal smidgen of "boring". Not everyone likes crime fiction, right?

A thought provoking post with thoughts provoked. I love it! Thanks Debi. And thanks to Minx for informing us of the categories. All of this brought a smile to my face as well as worry in my heart...

skint writer said...

Hmm - you might have something there debi, A collaborative book, Everyone contributes their own take on it, some will be academic, some will be humorous etc.

Can I nominate Maxine to be the editor or indeed the main writer, maybe taking opinions and contributions.

It could be published through POD,(some of the numbers are up on my blog) would cost hardly anything to set up.

I don't think I could do very much though, but I'll volunteer as a contributor if needed . .

Stop me - getting carried away again . .

ISLAND MONKEY said...

The mainstream media appears to be only waking up slowly to blogging as a relevant cultural phenomena. It's certainly the future in terms of the democratisation that the internet brings.

It was interesting yesterday a news report that for the first time online advertising expenditure has overtaken print media. That shift to online will continue at a pace. While many felt the impact of the internet was overestimated in the early days it looks like it was generally underestimation. You aint seen nothing yet.

With regards blogging all the real analysis seems to be taking place on blogs. Mainstream media writers cannot really get their head round it. They want to exploit it but are loathe to promote it too much. Blogging and so called 'citizen journalism' is one of the biggest issues facing the traditional media outlets as their audience dwindles in the face of such challenges. I have made a living from writing for many years but - like you I think - one of the things I love about the whole blogging culture is that it is so free and unrestrained. It's such an amazing tool for freedom of expression because it democratises the technology of creating a website and makes it fun.

Journalists carry too much power generally and have an inflated sense of their own importance. One of the great things about the blog culture is that it shows us that everyone's opinion is valid, almost anyone can write and speak and who's to say joe bloggs opinion on immigration or fine art is less valid than AN Other Politician or journo. It can be more valid because it can be more authentic and unmediated.

Long may it continue. It scares the hell out of mainstream publishers and opinion makers in many ways although they will try and exploit it.

Anyway just my 2p worth of random forts. You are right it's such fascinating stuff and worthy of some detailed intellyjunt analysis.

What about all the sub genres of blogs to classify? Trends and networks are developing at an amazing pace. As well as loads of other wider issues. There are lots of opportunities to get published that's for sure...

Debi said...

I'm overwhelmed, guys! What brilliant thoughts.
Maxine - oh go on! There's already almost as much as you need for a whole book just in the responses to this one post!
How often in life do you get to feel that you're riding the crest of a wave?

Julie said...

Hi Debi,
Just picked up on this - some interesting stuff. What I'm writing at the moment looks at the whole issue of how the mainstream media reports an issue compared to what people are saying in blogs..
I agree with Island Monkey that the media has been playing catch up and perhaps only recently caught on to the importance and power of blogging. One of the main issues for journalists blogging is that they have to adapt to the fact that people can comment on their ideas. Polly Toynbee on the Guardian's commentisfree wrote about the hostility of some of the bloggers, which is one issue. But also like someone said - and I can't remember now.. the lecture is over, welcome ot the conversation.
The idea for a book sounds great - as does a collaboration..

Debi said...

Hi Julie,
Great to see you here and thanks for the comment.
Methinks you could be the very person we need ...

phaedrus said...

hi debi, i thought you would think this article is interesting...

http://www.csmonitor.com/2006/0619/p06s02-wome.html

also, you might want to check out
http://jewaira.wordpress.com/2006/06/19/saudi-bloggers/

some ado about saudi female blogger that was blocked by her government.

phaedrus said...

i have to add the (women) who have their voices muffled otherwise...they blog so they can be heard. especially in countries where their voices are banned in all other forms

Debi said...

Welcome, Phaedrus and many thanks for these links. The power of the blogosphere, eh? Makes you realise how very important it is when it enables you to hear the otherwise muffled voices speaking in their own words.

Lee said...

How about the procrastinators? (one reason why I'm terrified to start blogging!)