Misunderestimating blogs

A VC in New York explains “Why 15 Million Is A Big Number”:

cNet suggests that the blogging bubble has burst. I don’t think it’s a bubble. I think its a revolution. We are taking over the media, slowly but surely. And this revolution isn’t going to burst. It may morph as new tools emerge that allow people to express themselves publicly.I think the more interesting number would be the percentage of internet audience time that is spent on social media. I am sure it’s still growing (maybe exponentially) and traditional media (including cnet) is declining.

There’s another number we’d like to know, too, or rather another set of numbers. I don’t have to tell a VC this, but: Who are the readers of the 15 million blogs? He cites a “ten to one rule” —

The 10 to 1 rule says that in social media, for every 10 readers you need one content creator. So 15 million bloggers will serve 150 million blog readers. That’s a ton of blog readers.

That’s interesting, if it’s true. “Rules” like that are the stuff myths are made of. But even if it’s a slice of that — who are the readers? I believe, because I am prejudiced, that it is a large percentage of “opinion leaders” and leaders of other sorts — political, commercial, technological. I don’t have to teach a VC the concept of demographics.

We both agree: Focusing on a single datum such as the growth in the number of blogs is silly. People don’t start new car or aircraft companies too often, either, but a hundred years ago they did. De facto barriers to entry, even those “erected” by a perception that there’s nothing special in starting just another blog in a crowded field, bespeak a maturation of the significance medium, not an apogee.

Cold Turkey

Cold as in secular, rational — which, when it comes to modern governments, we’re all in favor of.  I quoted Mark Steyn last week, who says the question of the moment is “who lost Turkey?” to the Islamists.  Ali Eteraz dismissed Steyn’s take.  Maybe Ali is right.

The core of the election

Really, it’s all about Olbermann.

Whatever happened to….

Elliott Gould? When I learned I had been nominated for the JIB awards I wanted to parody the concept of “Jewish American”-ism, and I picked a bunch of pictures of “famous American Jews” of the sort that a certain kind of restaurant has up on the wall to show which Jewish American mouths may or may not have been filled there.

Somewhat, but not entirely, randomly, I chose Comedy Genius Mel Brooks, who schmaltzes along in something that looks like retirement, Musical Genius Marvin Hamlisch, who lives forever in his melodies and is still doing nicely, thank you, on royalties, Wasted Genius Allan Sherman and … Elliott Gould, who, I felt, was basically what I could have been if I had been born twenty years earlier and been considerably taller.

In other words, he was the least like me of the four of them.

Okay, but what ever happened to Elliott Gould, whom I otherwise had probably not thought about for the last ten years? It just so happens that as I walked on the streets of Manhattan this week, The Village Voice, of all things, provided the — or an — answer.

UPDATE:  We live, we learnwe update (last one via @terryteachout).

Edwards fades

Kaus on Edwards at tonight’s debate:

Edwards kind of faded into the background. Crickets didn’t chirp–they completed their entire life-cycle during the pause after Edwards was asked to name his ‘moral leader.’ …

Edwards: “So” not the story of this election, I promised you.

Sullivan in love

Andrew Sullivan is buying, big time:

But this much we can already say: Obama brings something no one else does to this moment. By replacing one of the most globally despised and domestically divisive presidents in American history with a young leader half-Kansan and half-Kenyan, America would be saying something to the world: Bush-Cheney is not who we are.

Right. We really “are” half-Kansan, half-Kenyan. Plus half-baked, of course.  Very. Here’s a term I learned from Sully back when he was the best blogger in the world — “money quote”:

Obama would mean the rebranding of America, after a disastrous eight years. His international heritage, his racial journey, his middle name: these are assets for this country, not liabilities.This is the reason for his ascendancy. This is what the American people sense and the world awaits. This is what the Islamists fear. That last alone is reason to feel hope.

Yes, rebranding. That, above all, is what Islamists fear. They hate rebranding. It’s like kryptonite to them. Pork-covered kryptonite that they have to pay money to a Jew for — that’s how much they fear rebranding.

That’s who “we” are, Andrew? What you mean “we,” paleface? Hat tip to Kaus.

Attorney Ronald D. Coleman