Thursday, November 23, 2006

304th post - a brief review of British political blogs, blogging & AWN

Some that were once in my list of political blogs worth reading have now sadly departed, become sporadic or, like my own, grown repetitive and predictable. I started reading the things about a year ago but soon grew weary of the gossipy / muckraking sites which serve little purpose other than to denigrate politicians, amuse a few foolish fans and polish their authors' egos. Like talk radio and many message boards they provide hobbies primarily for ranters and dimwits.

But there is also much good, thoughtful stuff around. For example probably at least a quater of the posts featured every day on Bloggers for Labour are worth more than a glance. Too much football though.

It's about 330 days since this blog was launched so I'm about 9% down on my 'one post a day average' target. I'm pleased to have attracted hundreds of comments from scores of people and that very few of them have been abusive. Many of them have raised interesting counter-arguments and some have led me to modify my own position a tad.

I've never made it above 100,000th on Technorati's rating, although I got very close once, and total readership is difficult to assess. But I can be confident that I have fewer regular readers than the popular / populist political blogs. They, in turn, have fewer than the least popular quality UK daily newspaper and even it reaches regularly only about one voter in a hundred.

Although Jon Snow did read my post about his birthday, claims for the influence of political blogging on either 'opinion formers' or uncommitted voters are highly suspect. Close to nil would be my estimate.

Blogging provides a good way of letting off some steam, testing one's arguments and discovering a few like-minded and some unlike-minded people around the world. It's made me admire a little more the commentators who can churn out quality stuff week after week even when there's very little of interest around to comment on. But, in a curious reversal of conventional journalism, there seem to be more writers than readers in the blogosphere.

As Eddie Warring used to say at the end of his idiosyncratic summaries of Saturday afternoon's rugby league on Grandstand: 'and that's all yer getting'...

19 Comments:

At 18:05, Blogger bob said...

100,000th! That's like nearly 15,000 ahead of me. You should be proud!

 
At 11:55, Blogger Hughes Views said...

There you are Bob, I've added you to my sidebar. Hope that pushes your blog up in the ratings...

And I hope you're from Brockley in South London, its station is one that the trains I took to London when young used to pass without stopping. Mysterious places such as Anerley, Sydenham and Penge West, what excitement for a seven year old off to the big city for a Christmas treat...

 
At 18:44, Blogger jams o donnell said...

U've only been blogging myself for a bit under 8 months and I enjoy it very much. I am pleased to have picked up a number of regular readers and a Technorati rank of 55,000. The latter surprised me!

Keep on blogging. You have a great blog here. I have taken the liberty of linking to you.

 
At 11:17, Blogger Hughes Views said...

Thanks jams - I enjoy your blog, especially the admirable choice of template (!) and the explanation for its name. Exaggerating the direness of one's situation seems to be pretty well obligatory nowadays in affluent Britain! Good luck with your ratings. But I've decided, at least for now, that I've started to repeat myself so much on this blog that it's time to shut up...

 
At 19:21, Blogger skipper said...

Hughesey
I think you're just about right on blogging but am i to understand this is a valedictory post? What a shame. I've got used to logging on your site for a bit of sense after the trivial, opinionated stuff one reads eleswhere. It's a measure of my IT autism that I've no idea even of what 'technoratic' even is... But don't give up the ghost; I haven't noticed you repeating yourself just yet...

 
At 09:20, Blogger Hughes Views said...

Thanks for that Skipper, not sure if it's a valedictory post, I've spent sufficient time with real politicians to have learnt never to say never. Maybe more like Slartybartfast who, with his fellow planet designers, decided to hibernate until the economy picked up, I'll ditto until politics gets a bit more interesting. The French elections perhaps. Although if they get as little coverage as the Dutch ones did from our myopic media I may have to rely on my O level French (failed twice) plus a few evening classes and Google's translation services to guide me through the maze.

Anyway you can rest assured that I will still be around to kick you in the comments box over on your fine blog whenever you stray too far off what I regard as the message...

 
At 17:12, Blogger skipper said...

Relieved to hear that Hughesey. I passed my O level French but when I went to Corsica a year ago it might just as well have been Sanskrit I'd studied.

 
At 16:01, Blogger Tom Freeman said...

"I'm about 9% down on my 'one post a day average' target"

"I've never made it above 100,000th on Technorati's rating"

Quality beats quantity! Both for posts and readers. ;-)

I hope there are still more Hughes views to come...

 
At 18:14, Anonymous Ian Thorpe said...

Putting my IT consultants hat on (yes the initials are appropriate) I have to say that the state of the web is our own fault. We letr Google hijack the way we do things and now quantity always outweights quality. So people who post ten waffles a day will get hundreds of hits, people who post one thoughtful article will get a dozen if they are lucky.
(I get thousands BTW but that's because I understand the web and know how to bgeat Google.)

 
At 23:22, Blogger DCveR said...

Hi! Just dropped by to wish you and your loved ones a Merry Xmas and a Happy New Year!

 
At 07:30, Blogger Praguetory said...

Merry Christmas & a Happy New Year. Pity, you've stopped. I find it interesting to hear from Labour voices from outside the major cities. I would disagree radically with your gloomy assessment of the potential impact of the blogosphere - I hope that you remain part of the community.

 
At 12:52, Anonymous Anonymous said...

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Every major issue (and solution) has global reach and every global issue has local impact. Only by making it more relevant to people's everyday lives can we develop a more social and democratic Europe. That's why PES Activists and Compass Youth want to make connections that will keep the PES in touch with the most dynamic and innovative thinking of local activists. You are the eyes and ears of your communities so come and join the debate with our amazing line-up of speakers and feed in your ideas and opinions. We will also launch our EU Citizens for London campaign as part of this series of debates.

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At 22:54, Blogger Newmania said...

'It took about 100 years for the USA to bed in and about the same time for its single currency, the mighty dollar, to become accepted. In comparison Europe seems to be doing rather well... '


I spotted this give away below. United States of Europe eh...just as we said .I have looked through a few of your opinings and I agree with almost nothing you have to say.

I had better congratulate you for being the last man alive that believes the Labour Party are responsible for economic stability or that we have get much for the 30% increase in government spending . Got nothing much myself but the open admission that you are plotting the end of the country is not something I come across very often.

Quite invigorating

 
At 04:46, Anonymous patrick said...

Indeed, blogging is not always easy to keep up with - especially when interest is lacking - if, as you say, there are more blogs than readers, then a readership is best accumulated through a dialogue with those writers.

 
At 10:37, Blogger SRK Herry said...

your blog is nice

 
At 09:37, Blogger VickyK86 said...

The way the polls are going, it looks very possible that no one party will have an overall majority at the 2010 General Election. Even if they do, it could be small and make for an unstable government if they tried to go it alone.

I found a really interesting website where you can discuss and debate about the possibility of a Hung Parliament, its www.charter2010.co.uk

Interesting Blog. In the past, a party often had to command nearly half of the vote to obtain even a small majority in the House of Commons. But as the minority and national parties have grown, it has become increasingly possible for the Conservatives or Labour still to become the largest party in Parliament – even though around two-thirds of the voters want someone else in charge.

 
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