Home » Media & technology

Am I a…Cyblog?

Written By: Usree Bhattacharya on June 2, 2009 2 Comments

My days begin and end on blogs: charged, electrified, inter-active textscapes that are like no other…chaotic, always-in-motion, dynamic “journals” where it isn’t the processed, polished product that’s of value, but the product-in-formation, the process, the processing. Here are the confessions of a blogaholic.

Their hyperlinks, like branches curling out into endspace, send us hurtling across countless textdoms, as if on unending treasure hunts. I start here, pause on a post: you, and you take me here and here. And then I head here. I return where I began first, then…the cycle continues, on different blogs; through different voices: loud and barely audible; individual, and multivoiced; authored for an audience of two-or some millions. Blogs could have the kind of posts that changes your life, the kind that make you smile and go “awwwwww,” or the kind that you have to stop reading midway through for whatever reason…

Reading blogs is kind of like embarking on a grand sea adventure. You set sail somewhere, you have a destination in mind, or maybe the point is just to sail around. Maybe you’ll meet pirates, maybe you’ll get shipwrecked, maybe you’ll discover some sunken treasure off the coast of some uninhabited island, maybe you’ll discover a country. Something’s going to happen that you didn’t anticipate, and you are going to places you didn’t know you would, places you didn’t know existed. Maybe that tells you something about the blogs I read every day-or how I read them; or maybe, just maybe, that’s just the nature of blogs.

But hyperlinks are but a small part of the blogsperience (did I just coin this term? No, apparently not.) One of my favorite things is the “pithy wrap-up”, commentaries that are dialoging with others, so many vast others, in a sentence or two. They are hyperlinked indexes, pointing you to others’ words/images/videos, with just enough words to whet your bl-eader’s (blog+reader’s) appetite. See my favorite comment for more. And what else?

The endless trail of blockquotes, the gray backgrounds that mark off others’ texts others’ words others’ souls. It is not mine but I bring it to you, I bring it to you because you might miss it, I will give you a taste, a whiff, a hint of what you can expect, you have to find your way over to the author, but it stood out for me, this what you must know, the rest is optional. You have what matters to me here, and a hat tip to the originator. This is the money quote….

I rarely read MSM stories directly; I read blogs, and get linked to the stories that matter in a manner which makes me somewhat more of a “passive” news-getter. Yet the things I can do with news I find on blogs make me infinitely more “active” in processing news than I have ever been. Apart from the NYT, my daily staple, I get my news from a variety of blogs: the DailyKos, Huffington PostAndrewSullivan.com, Think Progress, Talking Points Memo, to name just a few. It’s not just that they sift through mountains of news stories and deliver the ones they find worthy of highlighting, but that the frame is “personal comment,” the frame is open, so that others can engage, enter into the discussions in multiple ways, or not.

And aahhhh, the sweet vocabulary that my language would be impoverished without…tags, permalinks, trackbacks, ping backs…sending me still more places, linking to other voices…

I recall only vaguely what my life was like pre-blogs. That was virtually (heh) a lifetime ago…before…I was a Cyblog.

For more on blogs/blogging by me:

To Blog or Not to Blog

My (Page)View on Political Blogging

Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,

Digg this!Add to del.icio.us!Stumble this!Add to Techorati!Share on Facebook!Seed Newsvine!Reddit!

2 Responses to “Am I a…Cyblog?”

  1. daveski on: 3 June 2009 at 7:05 pm

    Thanks for writing this. I think it will be key reading for the next course on blogs and hypertext in this, the decade when hypertext seems to have been forgotten as an organizing principle of reading, writing, surfing, breathing…

    It’s funny the “favorite comment” that you cite…of course that is now embedded in a new context and I can’t but help to hear music when I read it. And for the life of me I remembered it as something that someone else had written! 🙂

  2. Usree Bhattacharya on: 3 June 2009 at 10:29 pm

    I heard the music too, and saw in my “mind’s eye” the graphics accompanying the remediated text…the branches curling outwards are inspired from that, and I thought I linked to the video there, though it seems I missed it (will fix it now).

    What is yours is half someone else‘s anyway, huh…

Leave a Reply:

You must be logged in to post a comment.

  Copyright ©2009 Found in Translation, All rights reserved.| Powered by WordPress| WPElegance2Col theme by Techblissonline.com