Squashed

I’ve started to write two different posts about people saying things I disagree with, and ultimately decided I’m sick of playing this role. I wrote a response to Darren Barefoot’s complete failure of vision and imagination (as well as most of his commentors), but I chose not to publish it. How many times can I say the same thing over and over again? Bloggers who think that only the communication written down into ASCII text is of value are rapidly rising up my list of the most tedious fuckwits in the known universe. My day is full of entertainment and edification in a wide variety of media – written, video, audio. Do all those audio-hating bloggers dislike poetry perfomances and author readings because you can’t skim them as fast as the book? Yaaaaaawn, next.

Then I wrote a response to Barry Dobyn’s earnest but flawed piece on podcasting as an echo chamber but again I trashed it. It’s too beautiful a day to be negative, and my enthusiasm for both pieces has been inverse proportional to the amount of sunshine coming in through my window. Besides, both of the above have already been addressed, the former by Mike Dunn, the latter by Georgia Popplewell.

Instead, I’ve got new episodes of both Dr. Floyd and Claybourne to listen to. Too bad the two together are only nine minutes long. I’ll concentrate on what’s right today, rather than what’s wrong. For once I’m going to light a candle rather than curse the dorks.

9 Replies to “Squashed”

  1. I’d have liked to read that post. All you’ve got now is some vague, unsupported criticism. And before I get written off as an audio-hating blogger and a tedious fuckwit, you might want to recognize that I qualify my argument in the following ways:

    “I’m skeptical about podcasting.”
    “Podcasting actually has a comparatively short tail.”
    “I just don’t think that podcasting is going to have the legs that blogs have had.”

    I’m not dismissing podcasting, but rather expressing my opinion that it’s overhyped, under-consumed and technically challenging for the average human (creater and consumer).

    You might also be interested ot read that there’s a couple podcasts that I’ve really liked.

  2. Darren, you think this is unsupported because you don’t read my blog. In fact this is something I’ve written up so frigging many times that I just don’t feel like doing it again. I’ve responded to these sorts of criticisms over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over, and last but not least, my infamous “Mr. Spock” analogy. Forgive me for not feeling like dancing the monkey dance once again from the beginning just because a new person trots out the old tired “podcasts are so linear” line again or the “I can skim weblogs faster than listening to a podcast” stuff, ad nauseam.

    I’m tired of arguments that judge podcasts by the standards and affordances of blogs. That’s like judging the live theater by the standards of a puppet show. Wow, kids they are different and don’t have the same strengths and weaknesses! File that insight in the “no shit, Sherlock” folder. So you don’t like media that you “can’t skim” (you can, I do it whenever I feel like it – it’s a mystical thing known to the monks in the hills as “fast forward”). I’m tired of bloggers who think that media are valued most by how little time and attention you can put in it. I’d say more but I’ve said it so goddamn many times I’m sick of hearing myself speak it or watching myself type it. This is the tedious part, Darren.

    PS – Until I saw Mike Dunn link to you, I had never read your blog before. The only reason I have ever heard of you is because I’ve heard you on podcasts – Formosa Tea House and G’Day World.

  3. Darren, this is sounding more personal than I mean to make it. I have nothing against you as a human. I’m sure you are a beautiful bastard and a mensch, but this is a topic I’m burned out on. Many before you have exhausted my patience on this particular front, and many after you will run up a deficit I’m sure.

    BTW, listen to Caribbean Free Radio. You lament the white maleness of podcasts, and Georgia is neither (I’m assuming she isn’t white, I don’t know this as a fact). Hers is a podcast that I contend would lack most of its value in text. Hearing her lilting Trinidadian delivery, the ambient sound of frogs and dogs and the music she plays is the value. Yes, it takes 30 minutes to consume it rather than 30 seconds in an RSS reader. It’s worth every second.

  4. I may check out that podcast. Fair enough–next time, link to a couple of those posts in your original posting, and I won’t complain.

    As a pedant and a former theatre major, I would pick on your live theatre/puppet show metaphor. In fact, they should be judged by exactly the same criteria–how were they staged? were the performances truthful? do they entertain? did they tell a compelling story? Etc. The puppetry of, say, Ronnie Burkett, would elucidate my point.

  5. “dave slusher is the ronnie burkett of podcasting” – for all the under-informed bloggers out there…

    so from now on dave, when someone like darren chimes in, we can all simply state:

    this post is a “ronnie burkett vortex” – and then resist the urge to enter their rabbit hole 😉

  6. Darren,
    “I don’t like podcasts because I can’t skim them like blogs” maps very well to “I don’t like live theater because it takes longer to get on and off stage than in puppet shows.” You make my point for me, judging by the shallowest of affordances is bullshit – you have to judge what was accomplished by the use of the medium. When you say “I can consume 250 blogs in a day without much trouble, but can I listen to more than 10 podcasts?” you do that. What does “consuming a blog” do for you, compared to listening to Coverville or CFR or even my show? It’s a bogus comparison because they aren’t remotely attempting the same thing and you aren’t getting the same things from them. You think about it inside out, in that more things consumed == more better. That’s the anal-compulsive worldview. I view it in terms of the ratio of the time I want to be entertained by listening to something to the time I am. The closer to 1 the better. It wasn’t that long ago that I couldn’t find anything to listen to that I could stand on the radio at all. I’ll take having too much to not enough any day.

    “I can read this faster in a blog” is now the absolute fastest way to get me to roll my eyes and get the author placed on a watchlist of suspected goofballs. Yes, you could read the script of WAR OF THE WORLDS faster than listening to the Mercury Theater version, but that’s not the point. I’ll even float out a radical suggestion and suggest that blogs may not be the last word in interpersonal communication.

  7. Hello-

    I just wanted to say thank you for mentioning our little radio show, The Radio Adventures Of Dr. Floyd in your blog thingy here. We do appreciate it and as I know you are an Evil Genius, I know you are secretly a big fan of mine.

    Stay Rotten,

    Dr. Steve
    Evil Mastermind

    P.S. Fidgert says. “Hi!”

Comments are closed.