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Here's a question: Why's everyone so excited about how Wil Wheaton got a book deal from blogging? No shit he can get a book deal—he was an actor. An actor on Star Trek, no less, a famous show with hundreds of episodes. You and your stupid blog aren't exactly Wil Wheaton, now are they? Blogger, however, has added this topic to their official help pages, implying that if Wheaton can do it, so can you! [shakes head] As supermum noted (and I apparently missed) on my birthday, many powers attributed to weblogs, specifically the power to influence the masses and impart "legitimacy" unto one's proletarian ambitions, are rather dubious.

People so often like to assume we're part of this grand new cultural paradigm—most of these cultural turns we're taking, though, just aren't worth celebrating. The music industry, for instance, and its related phenomena are so crass. Apparently, one's not allowed to like music these days without also liking nudity on stage, multiple body piercings, too much jewelry, leather clothing, etc. If you claim to like rock 'n' roll, according to the emails I get from that I can't seem to stop getting (I've unsubscribed from them more than three times now), I obviously like "phat jamz," Janet Jackson, the White Stripes (whoever they are), and other unsavory things by dint of being on their email list. Another rule—those who like rock 'n' roll aren't allowed to spell, capitalize, punctuate, or use proper grammar, as those are things reserved for corporate suits—never mind the fact that if you play rock 'n' roll you can't get a job without dealing with such people. The "industry people," however, like to downplay that aspect of things, pretending that the money they use to buy the fuel in that "phat" car they're driving while "pimpin' out" and poppin' ecstasy really came from some healthy grassroots movement of fans whose undying love will magically make them millionaires so they can go save the whales. Sure, sure, I sound like someone's parents, putting air quotes around words like "phat" and "pimpin'," largely 'cause those words aren't really current anymore. (That was kind of the point of my using them, though.)

The big idea here is the rife hypocrisy of these supposedly "authentic" musicians who wear whatever is deemed cool by Rolling Stone, who promote their music through inarticulate emails from "e-team" leaders (hint hint, Evanescence) every time their "new" video from an album that's been out for a year is about to appear on MTV, and who, like a lot of musicians here at the university, believe that the unsavory, drug-addicted aspects of "the biz" are integral to their credibility as musicians.

One more annoyance: I read a few blogs that unfortunately happen to be located on Xanga. I even signed up for a Xanga myself (just like I signed up for a LiveJournal) so I could leave comments on the system, as only users are allowed to comment. That in itself, along with the not-so-subtle Xanga branding that appears all over its users' blogs (just like with LiveJournal and Blogger—there are real reasons I didn't blog until Jablog got going this fall), is annoying enough—but then there are the users! I hate the fact that most people automatically leave two eProps along with each comment on a Xanga blog. The system, you see, automatically checks the radio button next to "2 eProps"—hence it's one's duty to be discerning and uncheck it, so as not to inflate the [already dubious] value of the eProp. Yet no, no one ever bothers to uncheck the damned things, and it pisses me off. Whenever I actually bother to give eProps on a Xanga, I put one only, so as not to be confused with those who don't uncheck boxes. The whole concept of an "eProp" in and of itself is stupid enough without these people using them incorrectly.

Love this rant about how Movable Type and its associated blogs are the bane of our [collective] existence.

[ducks as another helicopter flies over low, rattling the entire suite] Grr.

8:06 pm, February 07, 2004 :: the jablog years

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