Saturday, October 24, 2015

The Blogger's Lifeline


First paragraph, 4th line should read "there were very valid reasons..."
Sixth paragraph, 5th line should read "ultimately..."

Post-Script: I was pleased to have seen the OzTypewriter Blog subsequently get a reprieve from its demise. But the principle stands, nonetheless: blogging is a social activity, which implies it is incumbent upon the reader to participate in a dialog with the writer.

It is no wonder that blogging, as a social force, has largely been supplanted with other forms of social media, where the feedback and dialog cycle occurs much more real-time. People are lonely, and are looking for connections with others like-minded as themselves. It takes a peculiar personality to stick with blogging, in this day and age. Yet I do so, perhaps because I'm long-winded and want my piece to be heard in its fullest, not truncated to 140-character snippets. There's also the point that blogs are well structured as archives of useful information (such as Mr. Messenger's), while more expedient forms of social media are more conversational but less relevant long-term, unless one's forte were social historian.

In an effort to put my money where my mouth is, I've consciously been trying to comment as many blogs as I can, even if it's with nothing more profound than "Good Job" or "Thank You."

Photo via Lumix G5, on the banks of Rio Grande, north of Albuquerque and not at the ocean, alas. No messages for me will be forthcoming, unless it is from upriver, in the high country of Colorado.

Typecast via Olivetti Lettera 22. Which reminds me, I recently received a shipment of an online order, sent to my local Staples store, of ten 100-count packs of Mead typing paper, which works out to around 3 cents per sheet. It's very much the "real deal," compared to some old Mead typing paper, from the legacy era of typewriting, that I found at a local thrift store; even the product code number is almost identical, off by a mere one digit. While the old paper was called "Typing Paper," the new is called "Multipurpose Paper." Comparing the two, it's very much the same paper, as far as I can tell. I've begun using this paper almost exclusively.


Blogger Phil said...

I don't know where I first learned about your blog, but the first time I read it I was impressed by the quality of the writing, and the variety of the subject matter, right up my alley. Who else makes their own memo pads, complete with a corner rounder? Have you done anything with blue print paper? Keep those blogs coming. I check every day for the latest post.

5:58 PM  
Blogger theshytypospherian said...

Joe: excellent post as always! I know it takes a great deal of time and energy to maintain a blog (precisely the reason I have not attempted one!). That is why I constantly try to post as many "thank you" comments throughout the Typosphere: because I want all to know just how grateful I am for their efforts. Kind regards,

7:53 PM  
Blogger Richard P said...

You are right. As much as I try not to care overly much about feedback, it is gratifying to know that people are reading. So I try to comment frequently on typosphere blogs, to provide encouragement.

It's always clear at first sight, and then upon reading, that your posts involve thought and care.

9:06 PM  
OpenID myoldtypewriter said...

Though I don't comment as often as I should, I always enjoy reading your thoughtful and a well-written posts.

10:56 AM  
Blogger Ted said...

I think you've hit the nail squarely on the head. I like to think that I blog simply to let out a bit of what I'm thinking at any given moment in the relatively safe environment of the Typosphere (by which I mean I know that pretty much nobody who knows me personally in meatspace pays any attention to my blog because they're Facebookers pretty exclusively). This group of like-minded strangers is a nice place to spread the seeds of thought and get new and interesting feedback. Not getting feedback is rare, but when it happens, I do get a tiny bit depressed.

One thing that helps, though, is understanding that once blogged, the posts are often found by interested people sometimes years later, who then comment and re-start the thought all over again. I doubt that's something that happens much on Flacebook.

All in all, I prefer the blog format because:
1) is all me, baby! a blog is (as you infer) like a public diary. a book all about you, and what you think and learn.
2) the pacing. A thought here and there, a couple or three times a week. Social media compels constant, mindless content echo. A blog compels fully formed thoughts and breathing space to consider them.
3) Self-sustainability and ownership. This is really only true of a blog self-hosted on your own server along with all its content - true of my own blog, but not generally true with everyone. My content is portable and not dependent on the vagaries of user agreements and changing "free" hosting space policies. Nobody else can lay claim to it just because they are providing a service to me, nor can they yank it down because they suddenly change a policy or the "freeness" of the service. Facebook? don't make me laugh.

And yes, the currency of blogging is attention and considered engagement. That is exactly right. I can only hope I pay my dues to those bloggers I value (:

6:40 PM  

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