Monday, February 13, 2006

The price of popularity


A recent post on Godol Hador's blog has generated over 150 comments in twelve hours. The topic was very interesting and worthy of serious contemplation and discussion. But, how can one even begin to do this in a blog, when everyone is commenting and pulling in their own direction. You just get this cacophony of ideas and it seems like a waste of time to even join in the fray.

There must be a better way to get these topics discussed, I just don't know how to do it. The paradigm seems fine as long there are just a few commenters, but it really doesn't scale.

12 Comments:

Blogger Irina Tsukerman said...

I think forums and discussion boards are better for this purpose. And sometimes maybe the blogger can help but breaking down the comments into several different sections to keep them more organized. Wow, I would have loved to have 150 different comments! : D

February 13, 2006 9:12 AM  
Blogger Godol Hador said...

Stop yer kvetching and join in! I read and usually respond to every (worthwhile) comment.

February 13, 2006 12:07 PM  
Blogger e-kvetcher said...

I was visited by the Godol? I'm not worthy, I'm not worthy!

PS, I tried to comment, but looks like Haloscan ate it again.

February 13, 2006 2:31 PM  
Blogger Ezzie said...

It's up to 450 now. :)

And he doesn't respond to every comment, but you can tell he's reading 'em all. It's a bit tough to join in the conversation, because it moves so fast; but I just wait for it to slow down for a while. :)

February 13, 2006 7:21 PM  
Blogger e-kvetcher said...

Thanks Ezzie,

Problem is that when things slow down, everyone moves to the next topic. It's really a feeding frenzy!

February 13, 2006 8:33 PM  
Blogger Chana said...

Great image! *Frantic princess throwing largess* More crumbs! More scraps! (Peasants fight with one another for crusts of bread. Princess thinks she's being magnaminous.) More scraps! More bread! (Peasants begin to destroy one another. Princess laughs.)

Actually, this is based off of an image from Elie Wiesel's 'Night' (a much more disturbing one, at that...)My dark thoughts of the night...

February 13, 2006 8:50 PM  
Blogger e-kvetcher said...

Actually I am thinking more like sharks or piranhas or this.

February 13, 2006 8:58 PM  
Blogger dbs said...

It's a new media and has some rough spots. In a few years, google, or whoever, will have much more powerful tools to index posts and comments.

Perhaps there's more reading than writing going on, but that's more a matter of human nature. (We bloggers need to be HEARD!) As the blog world matures we may develop some more self-control.

I'm actually facinated by how GH became so popular. He's very prolific and does, as he says here, respond to most comments. He's a strong and very entertaining writer. He's been at it for a while and chooses his topics well. Perhaps that all adds up to having such an avid readership. Still I wonder what makes GH the, well, GH.

February 14, 2006 10:01 AM  
Blogger e-kvetcher said...

You're right that he is a good writer, but I am starting to think there is a little bit of artifice there...

I think part of the issue is that it's the Hassidic Rebel syndrome. The issues being discussed like evolution or the global flood, or the documentary hypothesis are not that controversial outside the fundamentalist/Orthodox milieu. So it's a little bit like watching the Saudis debate whether women should be allowed to drive cars. They think they are really being controversial in just broaching the topic.

But a lot of it is knowing how to "handle" the crowd, how to keep them guessing, how to throw out little bits of carrot and stick. It's definitely show business.

February 14, 2006 10:29 AM  
Blogger Stevin said...

It's up to 610, now. Wow.
After services on Friday nights, little groups will break out at our synagogue, and discussions will start. Two or three people talking at the same time, seven or eight listening, and pretty soon they're involved, too.
This is good. Yeshivas would separate pairs of students once they began to agree, because keeping them together would mean they weren't learning and growing.

February 14, 2006 2:49 PM  
Blogger e-kvetcher said...

Stevin, I concur.

A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds, adored by little statesmen and philosophers and divines. With consistency a great soul has simply nothing to do.
--Ralph Waldo Emerson

February 14, 2006 4:47 PM  
Blogger Irina Tsukerman said...

And since when there are two Jews, you have three opinions, that means that 610 of those comments express double that in opinions, which means... oy vey!

February 14, 2006 5:44 PM  

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