Viva la Meritocracy
Dictionary.com: Meritocracy; A system in which advancement is based on individual ability or achievement.
The Blog Herald: Meritocracy; A system in which advancement is based on individual ability or achievement, also representative of the blogosphere and blogging, in that success is obtained irrelevant of gender, sexual preference, religion, race or geographic location and is achieved through hard work, determination, talent and naturally… merit. Denied by some who find it more valuable to promote notions of segregation as a means to promote segregation of their own flavor, whilst ignoring the fact that the blogosphere is close to a level playing field (the only restrictions on blogging being internet access and the ability to write.) Also denied and worked against by some small portions of citizens of the United States and some Middle Eastern countries, but generally not seen outside these areas.
(and yes, I am suggesting that those who push such segregation arguments on either side are not that much different to Middle Eastern extremists who have no tolerance of the West or Westerners: to quote Paul Short in a comment here: “Self segregation is segregation, no matter what your ‘€˜cause’€™ is.”)
Meritocracy is hated by Marxists because it creates an elite. But communist countries were notorious for elites based on power. Merit is the only real justification for elite status. Any other criterion distorts the natural order and reduces excellence.
Honestly I don’t know how you derive that I promote segregation.
I suggest that there are other factors at work, such as networking, relationships, community, luck and timing that advance people in all industries, including blogging. I’m sorry you find that heretical…but my point is to encourage writers who *want* or *care about* traffic, links and extending their influence to wake up and see there is more to it than writing skills.
You seem to be confusing my point about the Myth of Meritocracy (for ALL bloggers) with the fact that I’m the co-founder of BlogHer, which, while open to all, obviously had a focus on women in the blogosphere.
But to call me segregationist is a bit much.
You know you said in your comment on my blog you agreed with much of my post, so really this post is pure sensationalism, isn’t it? And *that* will get you traffic, so excellent tactic :)
Apologies: I was just reading my comments again and realized it was not Duncan who said he agreed with much of my post except the gender part, it was the next comment on the list. Sorry about that.
If blogging is such a meritorcracy, and all the best bloggers just happen to rise out of the noisy, infested Technorati tail without any help of networking and the usual social tools for making connections, why are all the conferences that either incorpoarte blogs or are for bloggers (with the notable exception of Blogher) wildly and outrageously cost-prohibitive? If you don’t have $1,000 for the basic registration fee, not to mention another grand in hotel and airfare, you will not be attending…..and you will probably not find yourself on an A-list blogger’s blogroll any time in the near future.
Face it, we link to who we know AND who we like. It is not mutually exclusive.
as far as I’m aware all the blogging conferences aren’t like that, for memory the daddy of them all BloggerCon is really cheap, you are also ignoring the fact that by being pretty close to a level playing field that you don’t have to attend a conference to get noticed, and I’ll give myself some credit here (although I’m a B Lister by all accounts, and yet in the Top 100 at Blogpulse) because I’ve never attended these conferences, and I live in Country Western Australia, probably the furthest point on the planet from the United States. Darren Rowse over at Problogger has a high profile, lives in Melbourne, doesn’t attend conferences…take another look at that list, sure maybe 50% of the them gather at conferences, good on em if they’ve got the time and financial means to do so, but you don’t have to be there to make the grade. Merit is the No 1 consideration. Sure, influence is helped by attending these things (I guess) but its not what’s going to put you there.