Andrew Gerns, a clergy colleague of mine, and a deputy to General Convention from the Diocese of Bethlehem, writes about his insights into the mental paradigm shift that working in “new media” requires – especially for people who grew up in another era (like the ’70s)…
“I suspect that like a lot of late Boomers, who grew up with tubes and now live with microporcessors, we feel the changes in technology–and therefore of how to think about the world–deep inside in a way that my son and daughter do not.
(My son lives and breathes computers. He can think in code and not just in one language. My daughter, who is perhaps more typical, thinks of her computers, PDAs, iPods, and more as appliances. She no more understands it than she does an automatic transmission, but she expects that it will ‘go.’)
This came crashing home to me when I tried to start a blog. A ‘blog’ is shorthand for a Web log. It is a way that people can self-publish anything from opinions to poetry and stray observations. I started three: two for the church and one for me. The one I started for me immediately ran into trouble.
First, I don’t post enough. Monthly is fine for newspapers but it is a good way to lose one’s cyber audience. Even weekly is too slow. Daily is the norm for these things—and the really hot blogs update two or three times a day if not more. I can’t think like my gig with the Morning Call…once every six weeks (and still my editor has to bug me!). To be a good blogger, one has to write and post all the time!”
Thinking Royal in an MP3 World
I wish I could write half as well as Andy does. The promise that he’s going to take on the discipline of daily writing – especially as we approach General Convention – is excellent news.
And I agree with him about learning to blog. It’s a different medium. It calls for a different set of skills than one develops as a monthly columnist or essayist. There are lots of different models emerging for blogging, from news aggregation to traditional essayists. Lots of people are trying to figure out how it will work best for their “voice”. And how they can use their blogs to have conversations with other voices. ‘Tis a fascinating time for all of us.
(Via andrew plus.)
Andrew is correct. I enjoy writing for my blog, and once I get started things usually flow. However, being able to sit down regularly for the purpose is harder some weeks than others.
The most striking thing to me, as someone who grew up in the 50s and 60s, is the development of email and the Internet. The amount of information available online is quite incredible. With two kids, 18 and 22, I am always struck by how much is available to them that wasn’t around in 1969, when I graduated high school.