Writing this weekly column for the Blog Herald has been a new challenge for me — I’m not used to blogging “on demand.” On my own blog, Publishing 2.0, I just waiting until something gets me sufficiently worked up that the blog post practically writes itself. Because of that dynamic, I also have a pile of unfinished posts that just petered out — if the momentum runs out, I typically find the post wasn’t worthwhile anyway. I’ve also gone days without posting because nothing got me sufficiently worked up (in the old days they used to call it writers block).
So I had to write this column today, and nothing really topical for the Blog Herald had me stirred — so what to do? Well, for one thing I can raise the core issue of blogging motivation, and ask the pointed question — what gets you worked up enough to blog about it? I can also posit for comments and reaction that the best blogging comes from the gut (although it’s also well informed by the brain).
Beyond that, I’m going to take the liberty of running through a number of brief items that got me worked up today, any one of which could have been a full blown blog post, but the point is to explore what the seed of a good post looks like. So here goes.
Steve Jobs And The Church Of DRM
If there was a TechMeme for Catholic theology, the view after a major papal pronouncement would probably look the same as TechMeme did after Steve Jobs came out against digital rights management (DRM). Kudos to Rex Hammock for recognizing the theological undertones to the whole DRM debate.
“Entering a conversation in order to influence it is almost always a corrupting influence on the conversation.”
Thus spoke David Weinberger, Cluetrain founding father, in an interview with Jeff Jarvis for Beet TV — is it possible that corporate communications and transparent conversations will never mix? Is everything emanating from a corporate entity destined to be “artificial” rather than “authentic”? You might call this the Weinberger Uncertainty Principle.
New Media Still Not Ready For Wall Street
News Corp’s quarterly earnings press release contained not a single mention of Fox Interactive Media or MySpace (hat tip to Staci Kramer at PaidContent, who also noticed this). If one of the new media leaders among traditional media companies can’t demonstrate the impact of new media on the bottom line, what does this portend for everyone else?
Barry Diller, honest media exec
From his Media Summit keynote:
Future of YouTube: I have no clue. They have a big audience…it is ridiculous
User-gen content: We come up with these terms which don’t mean anything. Almost everything we do has some form of user interactivity…user is part of the active process. We should not all be crazy over this
Why can’t more media executives cut through the crap like this?
First, Fix The Brand
From Jason Calacanis’ iMedia Brand Summit keynote:
The entire room laughed out loud when Calacanis asked if they knew whether or not their brand was loved while introducing the idea that — if a brand is interested in leveraging user-generated video — the answer had better be a firm yes. Cable companies, cell phone service providers and Calacanis’ former employer, AOL, would have a hard time driving good results, he said, with user-generated video, since at least some consumers would create brand-damaging content.
As Chevy Tahoe infamously learned when it put users in control of advertising, everything that’s wrong with your brand will immediately have an “authentic” consumer voice. Word of mouth has always worked best when you just make great products (see Apple). Giving “users” a platform to create marketing messages for your brand is a gimmick, not a marketing strategy.
Well, now, that feels better. When something gets you worked up, blogging can provide much needed relief. I find the best posts typically start with cage rattling and then take just enough time to step back and think things through, but without losing the momentum. (I will confess to having done more than a few posts where I blogged first and asked questions later, only to regret it in retrospect.)
Bottom line: blog your passion. And if nothing gets you worked up, you have to ask yourself — why am I standing on this soapbox?
Scott Karp gets all bent out of shape at Publishing 2.0.