Wednesday, 20 June, 2007

10 Things You Can Learn About Blogging From Monty Python

1. Spam, spam, spam, spam, wonderful spam! Wonderful spam… Comment spam is now a more common occurrence than email spam. Where you might see only a few spams hit your email per day if you’re careful with your address and filter it, you might see dozens of shots at a blog in the same day. Not just comments per se, but trackback and referrer links, where the same site generates a dozen fake referrer hits in a row.

2. No one expects the Spanish Inquisition! Blogs being such hip and trendy Web 2.0 devices, the feedback nature of the interactive web means you never know when you’re going to get caught making an incorrect statement, and get corrected by commenters. And our gracious thanks to those stalwart guardians of truth who comment to clue us in! Without you, we’d never learn where we mess up!

3. Is this the right room for an argument? Blogwars are becoming a fun spectator sport. It’s the most fun when you’re not involved. But of course, you get to impartially critique both sides.

4. Your mother was a hamster, and your father smelt of elderberries! Flames happen. It’s a big Internet, and you can’t have everybody love you.

5. He’s not the Messiah, he’s a very naughty boy! The rising culture of blogging is sometimes put into a harsh spotlight. Governments aren’t quite sure how to treat you - are you a journalist? A home-page publisher? A biographer? A historian? When bloggers get jailed in some countries for what they say, when one blogger can bust an industry scandal wide open, when a single post can bring a government lie to the surface, or when a grassroots effort to overcome oppression trumps all forms of censorship, blogging is taken a little more seriously than perhaps it deserves. We’re happy to go on doing our little part to make the world a better place, but just remember, folks, that we are mere mortals, OK?

6. Have you in fact got any cheese at all? You have to be careful with the headlines. Your blog gets aggregated all over the web, and people click the headline only to find an article entirely unlike what they expected.

7. How not to be seen. Some of us are lucky enough to not have our blog interfere with our jobs, or even our personal lives. For the rest of us, keeping a low profile is the only way to avoid having negative consequences down the line from something you blogged years ago. The reports of employers screening job candidates by searching the web for everything they’ve written are growing.

8. Come and see the violence inherent in the system! Help, help, I’m being repressed! Every week, we see another country try to censor the blog world. There is a political struggle going on out there between Internet freedom and Big Brother Government, and it gets uglier every week.

9. Nudge, nudge, wink, wink, say no more! Sleaze still gets the hits. All you have to do is put the words ‘Naked, nude, college girl, sex, boobs, Paris Hilton’ in your title, and here come the Diggers.

10. Get… the comfy chair! Sometimes you’re too lazy to blog; that’s when you have to put up a frivolous top ten list.

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