Remembering the Good Old Day

Tony wishes Moxie a Happy Birthday, recalling the July 12, 2002 party at which many L.A. bloggers, including yours truly, met. Here’s my own rundown on the event. Here are PatioPundit (Martin Devon)’s pix and commentary. Nice to see both his blog and his archives are still up. Perhaps not so nice to see he hasn’t posted since October. Nor has the party’s host, Brian Linse.

When I check the links, and names, from that party, it’s kinda sad to see some gone silent or gone altogether. Moxie and Tony are still going strong. So are Mickey Kaus, Matt Welch, Charles Johnson, Emmanuelle Richard, Bill Quick. But I’m not sure where Dawn Olsen went (that link now goes to a blog that I doubt is hers). Or Ann Salisbury. Warren Zevon, who was never a blogger but who attended the party while life was killing him, is dead.

Lot of offline talk lately about what’s happened to blogging. One friend sent an email I hope he puts up soon. Among other quotable lines is “most of the blogosphere has become a full-on commercial wankfest now”.

Not that it wasn’t then. But it was fun to hang out with a bunch of people, most of whose politics were vastly unlike my own — but whose writing was interesting and compelling and fresh and far more personal and open-ended than any op-ed page — and to believe we were beginning to make some kind of positive difference in the world. In retrospect, I don’t think any of us was making a dime on blogging at the time. For what that’s worth. If anything.

Bonus links… Competing Messages: Elections and Governance and Honesty. They both challenge. They both make you think. The Bill Hicks video on marketing in the latter is way too close to what too many of us — including yours truly in a former life — call home.

6 comments

  1. Mike Warot’s avatar

    Not all marketers think in terms of demon-grab-its..

    Some of us just want to help people get their message across. Which is all about helping to communicate.

    –Mike–

  2. Doc Searls’s avatar

    Agreed.

    Meanwhile, many “targets” of messages don’t want go get hit by one. Even if the party throwing it only wants to communicate.

    Bill Hicks was doing something that we also tried to do with Cluetrain as well, which was to speak for ourselves as targets, rather than as marksmen. He was much less polite. He is also now a lot more dead.

    Hard to believe he’s been gone since 1994, when he was only 32 years old.

  3. Tim Jarrett’s avatar

    Dawn Olsen does a ton of stuff for Blogcritics (naturally, as Eric is still at the helm there), and I believe she is the founder and one of the authors at Glosslip as well. I still miss her raw blog at Up Yours, though.

  4. bmo’s avatar

    Thanks for noting Bill Hicks, Doc. He certainly did pack a lot into those 32 years. Extreme, to say the least, flawed, and with a bile sack full of timeless material. I find his rage a balm after a day spent in meetings with ‘messaging’ types who, with full conscious vigor, practice a form of communication that is a lot less polite than anything Bill Hicks ever performed. Still, I think you’re hinting at something, which may be quite valid, about living/breathing in that world, to that extent: it does take its toll.

  5. Anil’s avatar

    Hmmm, yes it feels like that sometimes on seeing what can qualify as ‘driven writing’. Yet, countless others, not well known, for the well known usually dip in honey pots, still conjure up the old style writing, reflective, and warm.

    Unless of course the blogosphere has grown so big that it is difficult to narrow down to blogs that might remind of the ‘good old days’.

    Just a thought.

  6. Dawn Olsen’s avatar

    Doc, oh how Eric and I miss you. Someone passed this link to me and I was happy to see you are still doing your awesome thing.

    You can find me at http://www.Glosslip.com and Eric still runs http://www.blogcritics.org

    email me – we’d love to catch up.

    Hugs
    Dawn

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