Dan's Metablog
Writing about blogging, identity, and narrative

If Blood says she loves you...   Saturday, April 15   11:27 PM

Writing the "Blogs 101" section of my thesis, I followed the paragraph on "essential features" with one on "common misconceptions" — features often thought to be essential that really aren't.

And of course that immediately brought to mind a paragraph from Blood's "Hammer, Nail: How Blogging Software Reshaped the Online Community" which offered an example too good not to quote:

Blogger really was easy to use. When news stories began defining weblogs as "a website made with Blogger", it quickly became the most widely used blogging tool. And that changed weblogs.

An even more extreme version of this statement occurs in The Weblog Handbook:

Article after article appeared, defining a weblog as a website that was created with Blogger. If Meg or Ev ever said anything to dispel this notion, it never appeared in the published articles. (149)

Foolish new stories! But with the magic of LexisNexis, I've slogged through about 60 early (1999-2002) blog/weblog stories and I haven't found a single example of that kind of sloppy reporting.

The reporters get other stuff wrong, of course — there's some arcane point about whether "blog" comes from "web log" or "weblog," I can never remember which one it actually is — but not that. So I'm thinking: was this factoid real, satirical (because they are all in love with Blogger.com), or simply "too good to check"?

Update: Got a reply from Blood, excerpted below.

No, that's not satire, it's the way I remember it, but I don't have any references for it, either. These would be articles written in 2000 or so. I just remember becoming increasingly annoyed with articles that were infatuated with Blogger, while missing that they were part of a wider phenomenon.

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