It’s becoming a bit of a tired meme. Insult all bloggers using overgeneralizations and snarky language, closely track posts about your article in the blogosphere, report back, quoting nasty remarks and say this proves your point that all bloggers are just the way you said they are. I’m as worried about civil discourse as the next person — the lack of it on Council lists sometimes disturbs me — but I’ve also always thought that the best way to ensure that things stayed civil was not to call total strangers names in a public forum in the first place. Perhaps it’s just me. [thanks rikhei]
I happened to get a chance to review incoming ALA President Michael Gorman’s new book this month on Info Career Trends: Our Own Selves: More Meditations for Librarian
Library Journal publishes letters [including one from my co-editor K.R.] and then an editorial about the Gorman piece, hopefully putting it to bed once and for all. Does anyone honestly believe, as Fialkoff claims, that ” [l]ibraries are often ahead of most businesses and institutions in developing and using technology.” Anyone?
Whether viciously funny, or just plain vicious, Michael Gorman’s scathing indictment of bloggers unleashed an avalanche of outrage from librarians, the blogging community, and technophiles generally. The consensus among readers was about 99–1 against Gorman—and very few seemed to find the piece humorous, as he said he intended.
Rory has an essay worth reading on the blog people thing. Of particular note are two points. His quote “Library Juice is not a blog, but I will wear a “blog person” button if you send me one.” points to a certain sort of solidarity that can be useful in library and blogging communities alike. Secondly, he mentions the “blogging craze” whereby every new group with a web site decides that site must be a blog. There are many ways to put information on the web and we shouldn’t forget the Right Tool for the Right Job maxim. Blogging has brought many reluctant technology users into the world of quickly and effortlesssly shared information, let’s not bludgeon them with the term and then confuse them and mutate it to shove it in places it doesn’t belong.
[blogs] have become the default format for any new website, regardless of the appropriateness of a centrally chronological organizing principle. These days, any time a group is organized they set up a blog, as though all they can imagine offering via the web is their latest news and links. I think a blog is a logical part of a larger website, but often small organizations miss the boat when they make it their primary presence, with a single scanty page, linked only from the blog, telling us “about the organization” when information concerning the rganization could easily make up a site of its own and deserves prominence and accessibility.
Does the latest Library Journal editorial regarding the Gorman v Bloggers melee just read like so much celebrity gossip? It mentions that half the emails he received were pseudonymous. I agree that it’s often a good idea to send both critique and compliments under your own name. However, let’s just remember that while Michael Gorman’s views may not “represent the official positions of either ALA or California State University Fresno” as LJ patronizingly reminds us, he’ll still be reading our responses as a person who occupies both of those roles. The Free Range Librarian is also unimpressed.