Friday, April 25, 2003

A study in blog ecology (all times local to the poster):

Saturday 4/19 11:19 a.m.: Anastasios Kozaitis posts message titled "THE LATEST THEORY IS THAT THEORY DOESN'T MATTER" on Buffalo Poetics list. Numerous posts follow.

Saturday 3:09 p.m.: Nick LoLordo posts on the issue to the Poetics list.

Sunday evening 4/20: Since I get the Poetics list in digest form, I don't read the message until now, having the benefit of dozens of posts in both Saturday's and Sunday's digests.

Monday 4/21 1:01 a.m.: I post my own response on my blog, citing, among other things, LoLordo's post to the Poetics list.

Monday 5:06 p.m.: Stephanie posts: "Well, thanks to Tim, I no longer need to read the Poetics list! His succint and super-articulate rundown of the latest debate is just the thing for those of us who either delete the digest or surf the archives. "

Monday 7:19 p.m.: John Erhardt posts: "Am amazed by Tim's ability to put out fires, or at least say 'hey, this isn't really a fire -- someone's just flicking the light switch.'"

Tuesday morning 4/22: Ron Silliman posts his own response on his blog, apparently responding directly to the Poetics list, three days after the initial post. (He doesn't refer to my post.)

Tuesday 10:41 a.m.: John Erhardt posts: "If you haven’t already, check out Silliman’s piece this morning. While some of it is vintage Silliman (i.e., “langpo” trumps all!) he does raise a few nice points."

Tuesday 8:39 p.m.: Adam Novy emails me with comments on my post from Monday. (He doesn't mention Silliman's post.)

Tuesday 10:26 p.m.: I email Adam, responding to his comments and asking if I can post our exchange on my blog; he agrees.

Wednesday 4/23: On the Poetics list, the debate is still going on, but the dominant subject line is shifting from "Re: THE LATEST THEORY IS THAT THEORY DOESN'T MATTER" to "Re: THE END OF THEORY AND THE BEGINNING OF SCIENCE."

Thursday 4/24 3:07 p.m.: I post my exchange with Adam Novy.

Friday morning 4/25: Ron Silliman also posts an email he's received--from Nick LoLordo, who I cited in my original post. Still no references to my posts.


Believe it or not, I didn't do this so I could act aggrieved that Silliman didn't read me. Well, maybe it started that way. But I actually became much more interested in mapping lines of reading and response, both between bloggers and in the interaction between the blogs and the Poetics list (no one on the list made reference, so far as I noticed, to any blog). John Erhardt was the only point of mutual connection, at least as far as explicit mentions go. So parallel conversations could have been going on with no awareness of each other.

Maybe I'll turn this into a paper for Jim's blog conference. I'll call it: "The Latest Blog Is That Blogging Doesn't Matter."

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