Joho the Blog » More on internal posting

More on internal posting

Seth Finkelstein has challenged yesterday’s post on Blogging and public thinking about whether being a blogger has caused us (some of us? most of us? a few of us?) to refashion our experiences in terms of posts we might make. He points to a post by Mark Dery that focuses on what I think is a misguided critique of Jeff Jarvis’ blogging of the “indecent” details of his medical treatment. [Disclosure: Jeff is a friend.] But, Seth’s point has less to do with the particularities of Mark’s critique than with some broader points Mark makes.

I suggest you read Seth’s comments (which are in the comments section of yesterday’s post), but I’m here going to post part of my reply, because it makes a follow-on point to what I was trying to say yesterday, so please pardon the self-quotage:

The idea that public media alter our inner narratives is hardly new. (Stephen Goldblatt’s book on Renaissance self-fashioning is a great work on this topic.) It seems to me to be a coherent history (resorting to coherence in the absence of evidence) to say we are moving from a time in which media structurally gave rise to celebrity (because the media were mass and one-way) to a new medium that gives rise to some Hegelian synthesis of celebrity and actual sociality. That is, in the age of broadcast, we fashioned experience so that we were stars of an imaginary broadcast; in the age of the Web, we fashion experience so that we are bloggers with a non-massive, semi-social, potentially interactive readership. Under this fact-free analysis, the Web’s fashioning of our experience should be understand in _contrast_ to the celebrity-based stories we made of our lives during the Age of Broadcast.

Note that since I don’t have access to the inner thoughts of all bloggers, I don’t have any actual evidence — thus the reference to coherence and fact-free analysis.

13 Responses to “More on internal posting”

  1. For me, there is an interesting confluence here: just yesterday, I was speaking to an audience of folks from public health agencies about the dissolution of “audience” (in the broadcast sense), and the rise of collaborative construction of knowledge as environment (the point being, that those who are charged with the responsibility for communicating public health information should think about more engaging means than co-opting social media to broadcast so-called messages).

    Part of the talk had to do with the shift from a concept of “saying everything online” as a manifestation of celebrity-seeking to becoming active participants in the collaborative construction of a knowledge environment.

    (As for evidence, I suspect you – and others – will not be able to find any that stands up to so-called scientific rigour, since this isn’t a classical phenomenon that lends itself to classical methods.)

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