Friday, December 14, 2007

9 Ways to Make Your Blog or ThunderJournal Suck Less in 2008

I think I've done something like this before, but I can't find it. In any event, some of it bears repeating. Some of these items pertain to the right-leaning blogs. Some are universal. All are vital to reducing the amount of suck on the internet.

This may sting some of you. But remember: I do it because I love.

1. Yes, I understand the illegal immigration is a big issue with you. However, the enjoinder "Build the wall" has already been uttered in every conceivable permutation possible. Please find something else to write about. Maybe throw in an ass photoshop now and again.

2. No "Action Alerts". Please. (Unless, of course, you are making fun of other websites that use "action alerts".)

3. Stop telling me that your comment threads "foster open debate". They don't. Debate does not exist in any significant form on the internet. If it did, there would be no Godwin's law. Debate is a milieu between or among persons who are either knowledgeable on the topic or have researched the topic extensively enough to add an intelligent angle to the discussion. Debates end in either persuasion or clarity. Your comment threads feature a bunch of middle aged engineers and IT dorks alternately yammering about the finer points of Constitutional jurisprudence or insulting each other that end neither in clarity nor persuasion. FAIL!

Bloviating about things you don't understand just because you heard something that resonated with you on the Jason Lewis Show last night while calling the token liberal in the forum an "assnozzle" is perfectly fine; even entertaining at times. Calling it "debate," however, is false advertising. Stop it, assnozzle.

4. No Diablo Cody. Ever. Hipsters suck.

5. Unless you run a photoblog, blogging is primarily a written medium (with the occasional exception of the odd ass photoshop or FAIL image). Therefore, if you can't write, hang it up. I am not so interested in subject-verb agreement and the successful execution of the spell checking ap as I am with you making your writing compelling. (For example, bloggers like Mitch Berg, Ryan Rhodes and Jeff Kouba could keep me interested in a post about the 19th Century European turnip trade.) Start with verbs and work your way out from there.

There's no shame in sucking. There's plenty in refusing to realize that you suck.

6. Notwithstanding #5, please - FOR THE LOVE OF GOD - use your spell checker. You know who you are.

7. Stop pining for Reagan. If you are a right wing poli-blogger, please cease your incessant hand-wringing looking for the "next Reagan". Instead, why not focus on the "first Smith." Or Jones. Or bacon. Or whomever.

If you insist on this increasingly annoying quest for Reagan II, keep in mind that you will have little or no moral authority to slag on losers who still have their Wellstone! signs in their yards. Which is too bad for you, since that can be kind of fun.

8. When you get a press release in your Inbox from the party or a candidate's campaign, delete it without reading it. MN Pooplius and MDE have a corner on the regurgitated press release market, and they get far more traffic than you do.

9. How about unloading some of those superfluous graphics and baubles on your side bar? Sure, that "XX,XXX days have passed without justice for MaryJo Kopechne" widget was super-nifty when you first installed it 3 years ago. It's tired now. And while having your side bar look like a TGI Fridays waitstaff uniform may be cool, all that crap plays havoc with your layout and takes 10 minutes to load. If I have to wait more than 30 seconds to read your daily pearls of rant-o-licious wisdom, I'm perfectly happy to go without.

Here's to reducing the suck in '08!

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