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February 02, 2007

Michael Keren Lonely Blogger

MICHAEL KEREN (HE's NOT the Israeli with a strong record for transition programmes in Eastern Europe but he's the Canadian professor with a new book to sell) out stumping for coverage (FREE ADVICE: Blogs Sell Books), thinks bloggers living in a world where emotions may be real but everything else is make-believe. That's his perspective from his seat at the University of Calgary. Keren might have visited my blog, skimmed through some of my rants, or clicked into Irish Election blog postings where the activist spirit percolates just below the pages. But to draw his conclusion with any degree of peer acclaim, Keren must have sourced his writing after trawling through MySpace or Bebo.

In 2006, MySpace and Bebo grew their Irish population faster than the native Irish birth rate. On both of those social networks, self-expression bubbles forth through thousands of blogs.

As a blogger with threaded discussions that stretch back more than five years, I won't countenance Keren's baiting tactics.

In his book Blogosphere: The New Political Arena, Keren posits "individuals who bare their souls in blogs are isolated and lonely, living in a virtual reality instead of forming real relationships or helping to change the world". In my experience, that kind of situation is more likely to be profoundly evident in the person working through his third pint of the evening at my corner pub than in the home around the corner where a working mom responds to a Redmum post about teenagers and their hair.

Bill Graveland -- "Calgary Author Says Bloggers Are a Lonely Bunch"
Mitch Joel -- "Only the Lonely Write Blogs" (but Mitch doesn't believe that).
Julien -- "total fucking idiot" and Keren probably doesn't like hip-hop either.



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"living in a virtual reality instead of forming real relationships or helping to change the world".

Huh? Let me see... I've formed more real relationships through my blog in the last 3 years that I've formed at the pub. And needless to say the former are the kind which are allowing me to help change the world, certainly not the latter!

Keren needs to get his head checked!

Glad to see I am not the only person who harbours some ill will toward Keren and his book. Like most people who hold academic appointments I think he is threatened by the fact that internet publicaiton bypasses the established editorial processes that goes hand in hand with academic writing.

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