Tuesday, March 13, 2007

The megablog as black hole

Another comment from the mega meta thread. This one from my husband Demetrius, who is no doubt tired of hearing about "blogroll amnesty", but who gets why it matters...

The blogroll purge is indicative of a larger phenomenon. The Big Box Blogs have accreted the kind of critical mass that allows them to be Players on the national level. And, as such, there is a vested self interest in protecting ad revenues over promoting the kind of free speech the internet has as it's raison d'etre in politics. (We wouldn't want links to some little blog that is going to be a potential embarrassment for politicians who want to come and post and pay $9000 a week for ads.) Once they get to be about maintaining acceptability to the other Players they stop being leaders in the Progressive movement.

Blogs are not a "personal thing" if they are built/promoted as a community effort. If purveyors want to run them like their own businesses (and screen content to suit their bottom line) they should pay contributors and be treated like any other MSM outlet. Yes. That *is* a fine line to walk.

DKos (for instance) has built it's critical mass on the labors of all the little diarists who have contributed. It was a community effort. But, it is clear that the larger community should not expect a fair benefit from their contribution. If they are lucky they have been able to reach an audience with their message. But, they don't share those ad revenues. They don't share the fame. They don't share in a democratic decision making process. They are just bits of "space junk" sucked into the gravity well of a massive "star". The purge was the supernova ejection and the "dense core" left behind has collapsed to the singularity of Kos' fame and fortune. We shouldn't be surprised that less and less light will escape that Black Hole.

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