Audience response to the Panel

· Weblog Concepts

a place to write, nothing fancy has two long thoughful entries about the panel dates Wednesday and Thursday of this week. I couldn’t find permalinks, by the way, which are something the author discusses, on the issue of whether they are essential to the definition of a blog.
Rebecca said on the panel that they are not, and that may be so, but if the essential unit of a weblog is the post and not the page and if the linking between and among weblogs and other web resources is an essential act in the form, then I’d rate permalinks as fairly important elements in order to enable linking at the proper level of granularity.
As a longtime handcoder, Blood seems a bit wary of innovations that have become standard through the popularity of software tools. She mentioned on the panel that she doesn’t have an RSS feed because making one by hand would be too much hassle.
Back to nothing fancy, here are a few quotations to give the flavor of each post (in chronological and not antichronological order). From Wednesday:

One of the panelists asked who would be blogging about this. Maybe ten people raised their hands. My assumption is that if you were there and you blog then you’re going to blog about the panel. So that means sixty-five other people don’t blog. And so here comes my often and firmly repeated contention: if you haven’t blogged, over time, repeatedly, and interacted with other bloggers, then you don’t know what a weblog is.

So it was interesting to me that the panel began with no definition of or introduction to weblogs. And you could tell later by the questions who knew, intimately, as a user, what a weblog is and who had no experience and so, basically, didn’t really know what they are and how they work. In fact, a woman two seats away from me prefaced her question with, “I’ve never used a weblog, and I’m not really sure I’ve really seen one…” and then went on to try and talk or ask about how and if and why weblogs and their practioners could be a form of journalism.

…and from Thursday:

Sparked by the weblogs and journalism panel discussion the other night at the UCB School of Journalism: can a weblog have a limited life span? If it does, is it still a weblog?

I would argue that there is a place for weblogs with an intentionally limited life-span.

I agree with this last point. Openended and serialized does not imply infinite or immortal. I think blogs like most other things in nature are born, have a lifespan, and then die. Knowing how and when to stop blogging or to end a weblog is itself a skill.