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December 11, 2008
Gone, in other words, is any sense that blogging as a technology is revolutionary, subversive or otherwise exalted, and this upsets some of its pioneers. Confirmed, however, is the idea that blogging is useful and versatile. In essence, it is a straightforward content-management system that posts updates in reverse-chronological order and allows comments and other social interactions. Viewed as such, blogging may "die" in much the same way that personal-digital assistants (PDAs) have died. A decade ago, PDAs were the preserve of digerati who liked using electronic address books and calendars. Now they are gone, but they are also ubiquitous, as features of almost every mobile phone.One the one hand, I greatly appreciate someone putting to rest all this nonsense that because some early blog adopters have decided to use Twitter instead of their blog that this marks some kind of decline for blogging. The data just doesn't support that and anecdotes from the elite is no substitute for actual information. With apologies to Jason, the line that "The rest of the world may well have missed the unfolding of his tragedy," referring to his frustrations with blogging, and being crowded out by later adopters, made me chuckle. (In the end I'm envious: being personally dissed by The Economist is certainly a badge of honor!)
And, of course, I appreciated Six Apart, Movable Type, and TypePad getting a mention.
However, it's a little insulting for them to suggest that we are no longer subversives, isn't it? Are we so lacking in imagination and creativity that we, the blogging companies, don't have any more revolutions left in us? Is that all there is? Has blogging finally made it, and change is now reserved for other technologies?
Personally, I don't think blogging is done, in the sense that this article suggests. It may be true that blogs have indelibly disrupted mainstream media and changed the landscape of journalism forever. That revolution may have accomplished its goal already. But I suspect there are more revolutions left for blogging to lead. For example, I believe that today's mainstream social networks have a lot in common with yesterday's mainstream media. And I think blogging -- and bloggers -- will have something to say about that.
December 5, 2008
From today's Wall Street Journal:
On Thursday, Cuban blogger Claudia Cadelo, was summoned to appear at the Interior Ministry, which is in charge of domestic security. A day earlier, Yoani Sanchez, the nation's most prominent blogger, was told by authorities that her activities had "crossed the limits of tolerance," and was told she couldn't hold a planned meeting this Saturday of local bloggers, according to Ms. Sanchez.
May 8, 2008
Stephen from Office Snapshots paid us a visit. He did a good job, despite the unflattering shot of me!, capturing life at Six Apart -- a great place to work. Valleywag put our office in their top 10 and a bunch of folks Dugg it. This can be YOUR workplace too -- if you are interested in joining the hundreds of people who work at Six Apart: we're hiring!
April 13, 2008
UPDATE: The YouTube Sketchies 2 contest is over. There were over 5,000 video submissions, and after Jenny and WhateverHollywood made the top 50, they then made the top 20, and then the top 10. And finally... they got third place! That's third out of 5,000!! And the first and second place finishers were YouTube Goliaths, so this was a fantastic showing. Thanks to everyone who voted! Congrats to Jenny, Ellyn, and Alyssa!!
I've written before about my sister's Hollywood career but I haven't posted yet about her fantastic new Internet career playing the part of Apple on WhateverHollywood.com. More on that in a bit, but first, she needs your help!
The Whatever Hollywood girls have entered the YouTube Sketchies content and have made it to the final 10! They now need your vote to put them over the top. At stake is $25,000 in cash and $15,000 in production gear which would help ensure that WhateverHollywood stays alive. Their task was to create a video about "living the dream" that used the word "indubitably" in it.
To vote for Jenny, please follow these easy steps:
1. Visit the Sketchies YouTube page
2. Search for "UNFAMOUS" in the "Search for a video" box at the lower right of the page
3. Click on the video that shows up
4. View and vote Thumbs Up for "UNFAMOUS"
5. Vote again! (You can vote once a day until the contest ends -- April 15th!)
Here is their submission and I think it's great. It tells the tale of three Hollywood outsiders, poor & unfamous, living the dream -- all in a catchy tune.
WhateverHollywood is a site about Apple, Suri, and Shiloh, the characters played by my sister and her two friends Ellyn and Alyssa (who are sisters). Jenny's easy to spot -- she's the blonde -- and her character, the aspiring actress, is based loosely (or not so loosely perhaps) on her life with her friends who aspire to be a TV host and a singer/songwriter respectively.
Their site, powered by Movable Type of course, is full of other great videos, skits, and "behind the scenes" rolls. One of my favorites, which I thought was hugely clever, was their "Internet Killed the Hollywood Star" video which I think sets the tone for their whole effort -- and cutely frames the Internet v. Hollywood confrontation.
I really do believe we are in a fantastic transition period where talent like my sister will find that the path to Internet fame is more fulfilling than that of Hollywood fame. It takes as much effort, but at least they have control over what they do, without being at the whim of an industry that can be fickle and brutal. Chronicling their trials and tribulations of trying to break into Hollywood is not only cathartic, in the end it may be more rewarding.
Lots of other great videos about spray tans, cell phones, and low-carb pizza at their site. Enjoy!
February 18, 2008
In the episode, which you can preview on Gourmet's site, the producers have documented some of the leading lights of the food blogosphere, from Hong Kong to Hanoi, to two of the cities Six Apart calls home, Paris and San Francisco. And every single one of the blogs featured is powered by Movable Type or TypePad. Once you've checked out the show, here are just some of our food bloggers you'll want to sample:
- Sticky Rice, where Mark Lowry documents his culinary adventures in Hanoi.
- Chez Pim, Pim Techamuanvivit's signature take on food from the Bay Area and beyond.
- Cha Xiu Bao, Josh Tse's story of his delicious discoveries around Hong Kong.
- David Lebovitz, the eponymous diary of a Parisian foodie.
December 31, 2005
July 13, 2005
What better way to end my blogging drought than with a tribute to my sister Jenny? She's in New York today to attend the premiere of The Wedding Crashers, the new frat pack rom com--a buddy comedy starring Owen Wilson and Vince Vaughn and... Jennifer Alden. That's her in the wedding dress. She plays a bride in one of the weddings crashed by Owen and Vince, who apparently think this is a good way to meet emotionally malleable women. It's not a huge part, but a small part in a huge movie is a big step forward in her career--and a career in Hollywood, big or small, is no easy feat. Perhaps the coolest part is that her father is played by Christopher Walken and her mother is played by none other than Jane Seymour. That's right--Bond girl Solitaire plays my little sister's mother. How cool is that?
As her IMDB page shows, she's been getting some fun roles in shows such as "That '70s Show" and the ill fated "North Shore," as well as a bigger part in The Blind Guy, a movie in production. Here's a photo shoot of her and other members of "Young Hollywood" by the famed Giuliano Bekor (she's second from the left, and 6th and 16th from the left too).
Jenny was always a character--beautiful and full of personality--and while I'll have to confess that some of her more energetic qualities were not always appreciated by an older brother trying to make it through his teenage years enduring as few renditions of Les Miserables and The Little Mermaid sung at full volume as possible, I realize now what a special talent she is. And while she could stand in for Jessica Simpson, don't let her looks fool you--she probably got a higher GPA at Dartmouth than I did.
I'm so impressed that she's stuck with it in Hollywood and proud to say of my little sister "I knew her when...."
January 10, 2005
Not the most provocative post I've ever made but I just got a pedometer and I figure that if I blog it, I will be compelled to keep my step count up. Yet another thing to clip to my belt! Here's an article that addresses "How Many Steps Per Day Are Enough?" I'm not there yet. Better go for a walk.
December 29, 2004
This is hilarious... and sad. If you were like me, and remember being mesmerized by the likes of Pong, Space Invaders, and PacMan this will have you in tears--and make you feel old. While I feel totally intimidated by the chaos and complexity of today's video games, kids today are utterly bored by the video games of yesteryear. My favorite line: "I'd sooner jump up and down on one foot." But the whole thing is worth readng. And see this year's edition.
September 30, 2004
"Thanks" alot to John Battelle for totally distracting me with this pointer to the Kelptone's A Night At The Hip-Hopera just when I'm trying to prep for his conference on Tuesday. I can't stop myself from playing this track over and over. And of course the fact that this is "illegal" is a compelling case in point for why we have to dramatically update our IP law in this country--and do so over the patronizing, self-important protestations of the music oligarchy (and the polticos that do their bidding.) You can't go to a movie now without the industry fronting some disheveled set designer suggesting absurdly that movie piracy has somehow cut into his probably unionized wages. And on a recent United flight I was treated to the unwelcome spectacle of the super-wealthy Sheryl Crow interspersing her in-flight performance with a complaint about music piracy. I think it’s a tactical mistake for the entertainment industry to mix lobbying into their content--and will diminish from both. There IS such a thing as IP theft, but IP laws are meant to strike a balance between incentives to create and freedom to create. This is an anecdote that there is an imbalance in the system.