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"Murphy was an optimist!"

Scoble is an Idiot August 29, 2007 6:11 am

Posted by Doug McCaughan in : Blog, Publishing
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All bloggers are idiots! The first line of Why I Blog says "blogging is stupid." Why?

We paint targets on ourselves and encourage friends, family, acquaintances, and strangers to make comments which, depending on our mood, may hurt our feelings or cause us to make a flippant remark in jest or anger that changes our relationship with those commenters. It is dangerous waters. [Source]

Why would someone throw themselves to the wolves and risk having your reputation tarnished?

Those are some of my reasons. Blogging has its nerve racking side with people getting the wrong impression of the blogger. Online provides a false sense of anonymity which allows us to put on or take off a mask much the way a car allows someone the same false sense of anonymity which manifests itself in road rage. We see a driver give the finger to another driver, blow their horn in anger, or cut them off because the cars take away the human element; all the driver sees is a car. However, those around us see a white van with a big number 53 on the hood and wonder "why is Doug being so rude?" Can one blog post change your reputation with the people in your life (online or real life)?

When people from the online world meet for the first time, the experience is unnerving, fascinating, and enlightening for these online people have shared stories and know of each other intimately but are always surprised to find that often the person they “know” online is not the same as the person in real life … and in real life the person may have much more depth, be less revealing, and more politically correct. [Source]

The reverse is also true. When someone in the real world discovers your blog, you risk having their impression of you changed. I often cringe when someone says "I found your website."

So who is Scoble and why is he an idiot? Scoble is not unlike me. He’s a technoevanglist. I used to think he was over-hyped because of his job at Microsoft and just happened to be one of the lucky bloggers that got noticed. Then I actually started reading his work and watching his Twitters (and his link dumps) and to be frank, he has earned his notoriety! And his notoriety has been self perpetuating as it has taken him into tech shows and earned him first looks at cool technologies. Ok. Maybe Scoble is very unlike me. Perhaps I wish I could be more like Scoble! Why is Scoble an idiot? Oh! Because he published something raw and got the ire of many people. (He’s not really an idiot.)

It’s interesting that Wired chose to link to this and jump on the "Scoble is an idiot" pile. [Source]

It is easy to criticize someone particularly when that person throws themselves in the public’s eye. The more people looking, the more likely someone will give a negative review. As we produce a large volume of work, the odds that the publisher is going to put out something bad increases. Perhaps we should be a little less critical!

Update: Dennis Howlett understood Scoble’s message.
Scoble Doesn’t Deserve the Scorn He’s Getting (I understood his message)

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