In cyberspace…no one can hear a blogger scream
Doc Searls said today, “Vanity isn’t the only reason to have feeds of searches for one’s own name. It’s also one of the best ways to start, join and participate in public (multi-blog) conversations. Also to see what works and what doesn’t. I’m often amazed at how little traction some posts get. I put a lot of work into Open the Pod Bay Doors, for example, and it got approximately squat Ã¢â‚¬” as did the conversation I had with Steve Gillmor while I was writing it.”
I agree it’s all about conversations. What I find interesting, troubling, and some times defeating are the more than 1,000-1,500 unique visitors per month I have visit my blog…and few leave comments. I often wonder — like the tagline “In space no one can hear you scream” for the movie Alien — if I’m out here investing time, energy, effort and enthusiasm in blog posts that quickly roll off and in to the ether — and that no one gives a crap. Multi-blog conversations? Most of my stuff doesn’t seem worthy of many trackback links (though I have dozens) and I’m certainly not involved in “multi-blog conversations.” Perhaps one has to be one of the cognoscenti in a specific discipline (with people that blog too) to be worthy of a multi-blog conversation.
Yes, my posts appear high on the relevancy rankings in Google and Technorati A LOT and people come to my blog via those routes. Yes, many of the people I care about follow along and frequently comment to me personally. Yes, I find that my blog is almost a diary of my personal brand, my consciousness and my being which has proven worthwhile. Yes, I read my past posts and feel pretty good about the overall body of work I’ve generated. Still, I’ve been having thoughts lately about the payoff (not monetary but engagement in conversations and connection with people around issues I’m writing about) or the lack of payoff and how it balances against all my effort (I’ve got a day job and a family with a bride that has lately been second-guessing the energy and effort I’m investing in blogging and podcasting).
As a benefit of this effort, I’m delighted to be involved in several email penpal-like conversations with people in Canada, Amsterdam, the U.K., Japan, Australia and various points in the US. That alone is worth the effort…though I’m not sure if I’ll ever meet them face-to-face. Also, my purpose with diving in to the blogosphere, becoming a podcaster and totally and completely immersing myself in Web 2.0 (the acceleration and momentum which is becoming palpable) is to figure it out, be in-the-game and gain an intuitive understanding of what’s happening as the collective consciousness of mankind gets connected. The only way to understand it is to live it and what’s happening right now is the most fundamental shift I’ll see in my lifetime.
So while it’s cool that Google spiders blogs and Technorati has focused tagging and rankings, it would be great if there was some sort of way to affix a value ranking to a post and its tag in order to kickstart these so-called multi-blog conversations. If I get connected with someone with some sort of intrinsic value (e.g., writes about Apple and used to work at the company) then he/she would have a higher ranking. Maybe, just maybe, we could enable this within the Identity Management effort currently underway?
Oh yeah…feel free to leave a comment! 😉
About Steve Borsch
Connecting the Dots Podcast
Podcasting hit the mainstream in July of 2005 when Apple added podcast show support within iTunes. I'd seen this coming so started podcasting in May of 2005 and kept going until August of 2007. Unfortunately was never 'discovered' by national broadcasters, but made a delightfully large number of connections with people all over the world because of these shows. Click here to view the archive of my podcast posts.