Sex – I highly recommend it.
Drugs – No real experience there.
Alcohol – YES.
Nudity – Hard to take a shower with clothes on.

GapingVoid says that blogs have tipped. I agree. The best example of this is that bloggers are getting book deals. But, the bloggers that can make a living by blogging (Dooce, Gaping Void & Kottke to name a few) are also good examples of the phenomena. I recently mentioned Anonymous Lawyer, who landed a book deal, in a post. Now, I read that ClubLife is also writing a book. Opinionistas was recently featured in a NYT article and expects to get outed soon. A book would surely follow there too, I think.

I say, good for them. I hope every one of the books is a best seller…and, I hope those getting paid to blog are successful as well. It is a cool thing to see.

That the book deals are coming for those that write about their work is a very interesting aspect of the whole phenomenon. They are talking about their jobs and people are consuming it en masse. This is fascinating to me.

Yes, the bloggers that do political stuff get lots of attention too. But, that is not so surprising actually. For a country that has such trouble getting people to vote, there is never a shortage of political opinions…on the internet or anywhere. But, I digress…

The bloggers that have created an anonymous (which I’ll come back to) environment where their venting or creativity can manifest itself as entertainment have created something new. And, I think it fits within the recent trend toward participatory and experiential engagement (read Pine & Gilmore’s Experience Economy book). These people have pulled back the curtain on their jobs…with, admittedly, either pure genius writing or “watching the train wreck” play-by-play…and the audience makes a connection. The audience likes to read about the jerks at another person’s job. They like to be entertained with witty or disgusting tales. They get engaged. They participate.

Yes, people connect to music and TV and movies too. This isn’t to say the connection of an audience is new. Rather, it is to say that for the internet this is relatively new. The much vaunted and world-changing internet is moving into a new realm of entertainment…or “inter-tainment”. Like I said, I think it is fascinating.

But, in regards to the anonymity, I wonder where it will go…where it will end up. Dooce got “Dooced” (she did coin the term) for writing about her job. Instead of a book deal, she got married and moved to Utah. I wonder, actually, if she regrets not getting a book deal herself. Surely there is a limit to the demand for this type of intertainment. Maybe there is only a market for one of these type of anonymous, but creative, “windows into the life” per field or profession. So far, the early movers into this new type of blogging intertainment are the ones getting the notoriety and monetary reward. But, how many more can do it?

And, what about the anonymity? In the end, once the book deal happens the name of the author becomes public. The backlash potential does exist. Yes, the book will sell. But, what will be the personal cost for these fine authors?

Which brings me to me. I have stories. Good ones. Bad ones. I have stories about work. I have lurid tales of sex and alcohol and nudity and lying and cheating and stealing and people’s lives affected for the worse. I could tell these stories. And, I could get dooced.

But, more importantly, I could get blacklisted from my profession. I could ruin people’s lives. I could affect, to a small part at least, an industry. I could get a book deal, if only I got noticed by the NYT.

Maybe the telling of my tales wouldn’t be all that creative or witty. Maybe I wouldn’t gain an audience. Maybe I would only be telling the stories for cathartic or narcissistic reasons. Maybe I couldn’t handle the backlash or the attention. Maybe I should just let lying dogs sleep…

File Under: AND AND AND AND

Copyright (c) 2005 Jamoker. All rights reserved.

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