Saturday, March 24, 2007

Tim Jonze Please Take Note:

1. Comment is Free is not a blog. It's a newspaper website that allows moderated comments. It isn't updated by a single person or identifiable group of people, it doesn't link to other blogs to form part of a community, and its posters rarely converse with - or even acknowledge - their commenters.

2. People who comment on Comment is Free are not 'bloggers'. They are 'commenters'. They may also be bloggers, but you have no way of telling, unless they specifically type their blog address into their comment. Unlike proper blogs, CiF doesn't automatically link to commenters' homepages. This sends a subliminal message to CiF commenters that says: 'although we spout off a lot about how democratic we're being, we actually think you are inferior to us, and your paltry amateur websites are not worth linking to'. This is probably one of the reasons CiF commenters get so riled up.

3. You are not a blogger. (You think you are, because you sometimes get paid to write on the Guardian Arts blog, but in my book, that makes you a journalist.)

Honestly. I don't know what Emily Bell et al have been telling the staff, but almost all Guardian/Observer hacks seem to be under the impression that the Guardian invented blogging, in some sort of brave and pioneering foray into democratic media, and that CiF is the only 'blog' in existence.

Maybe one day one of them will accidentally stumble into the wider blogosphere, like Jodie Foster in Contact, and discover it teeming with highly intelligent alien life.

And speaking of alien life, it's all gone a bit psych-rock here at Quinquireme Towers, as we interrupt our boycott of British indie bands to appreciate the mighty cosmic genius of The Aliens. Here, have a track off their new album 'Astronomy for Dogs', which manifests a particular awesomeness from 3m12s onwards:

The Aliens - Only Waiting (mp3)


Urban Chick said...

hear hear (or is it 'here here'?)

"highly intelligent alien life"

oh yesssssssssssssss

Tim Footman said...

Oh dear. I remember Tim Jonze from when I was editing the album reviews for Careless Talk Costs Lives. My, he's an enthusiastic and opinionated indie-pop scamp with the occasional wry turn of phrase, I thought. Next thing I know, he's at the NME. And now the Graun.

The biodiversity of CiF is actually quite peculiar. Yes, a lot of people on it are Graun hacks, and presumably are paid accordingly. But lots of others just throw their stuff into the pot, on the basis that they might get paid if the boss digs it. So, are they bloggers if she doesn't?

One day, I'll write a post about it. No it's not a blog. But there's something blog-esque about it. Like those quasi-indie labels (Food, Hut, Blanco y Negro) that are actually run by majors.


james henry said...

My blog's not particularly intelligent.

patroclus said...

UC: I still think that some journalists can't handle the idea that some amateur bloggers might be as clever or cleverer than them. Or that they might be better writers. Or that they might have more interesting lives or more interesting things to say. Or that they might be funnier.

Tim: I wish you would write a post about it. See, I am mouthing off about it, but I don't really know how it works - I just don't like the fact that the CiF posters (usually) don't engage with the commenters, and that it doesn't link to the commenters' own websites.

And I don't like comment moderation either, because I think that blogs should actually *be* what TJ calls 'a forum for open debate and the democratisation of opinion'. And the minute you start allowing some voices to be heard but not others is the minute it all starts to get nasty (see the backlash that broke out over the shaggy blog book).

Anyway, until CiF lets everyone play on an equal footing, I'll continue to think of it as being more like Mystery Science Theatre 3000 than actual proper blogging.

Lastly, is his surname *really* Jonze? Or is it actually Jones?

James: You once used the word 'jejune'. That's good enough for me.

Billy said...

Jonze? Jones? What's wrong with people's spelling these days.

Tim Footman said...

It's Jones, I believe. But there's already a music hack called Tim Jones. Used to write for Record Collector. Big fan of Marillion and 80s AOR.

Valerie said...

Aliens are interesting. I like the blatant Beatles tip of style here, except that I keep wanting to add "...within you and without you" at the end of every line.

Little bit of Monkees perhaps too, and even ELO (who I {cough} like) in here too.

I agree with you about the 3m+ transformation where it goes all Pet Shop Boys in Space. The violins and rockslide at the end are cool.

Anyway,I think I like it. I probably just ruined it for you, though :-/

Dave said...

Gosh, that took a long time to dowload. Well worth it though; thanks.

Alan Devil said...

What's with all the NME writers being hired by the Guardian? The NME, by the most charitable definition available, is an OK mid-circulation corporate guitar pop magazine for teenagers. But the writing is shit. But - Tim Jonze, Alex Needham, Dan Martin - the Guardian seems to think otherwise. Why?

patroclus said...

I can only suppose that the Guardian journos are attempting to re-live their indie youth - witness the woeful 'Glasto Fanzine' it foisted on us yesterday. Glastonbury these days is about as countercultural as Marks & Spencers, and the Guardian isn't helping.

Alan Devil said...

I actually went to Glastonbury this year and was delighted to discover that it's still very amazing. But you're right - the Glasto Fanzine was patronising, unfunny, uninteresting indie establishment nonsense. And who was on the editorial team? Tim Jonze, Malik Meer, Dan Martin, Alex Needham...