India Uncut

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Wednesday, November 02, 2005

A cosy little Venn diagram

Jai Arjun Singh writes about how journalists and bloggers form incestuous little circles, and it is apt that I stick to that tradition and link to him.

Are we really incestuous? Well, here's how I look at it: I have a limited attention bandwidth. All of us do. There are only so many things I can read in a day, only so many blogs I can keep track of, even with Bloglines. When I started reading blogs, I experimented around with a whole bunch. Now there are just a handful I read every day, with many others I check once a week or so. Obviously, I can only link to what I read. Obviously, I will only read from sources I like and trust. Obviously, this will be a limited lot. Incest!

I know, thus, that there are many readers who will not like my blog because my political inclinations may be different (I oppose both the socialist left and the religious right), or because I don't link to the kind of things they like to read. Fair enough. Equally, if my sitemeter stats and incoming mail are any indication, loads of readers find what I blog interesting enough to keep coming back. And that motivates me to keep on doing what I do. True, I don't get paid in monetary terms for blogging, but the readership I have validates my writing, to some extent. I enjoy the sense that by linking to the things I like, by remaining true to myself, I still get a lot of readers. That means there are people out there who share my interests and concerns, and I have even connected with a lot of them offline, which has been very rewarding.

Many of these readers expand my horizons. I often get mails from readers pointing me to blogposts or MSM pieces, and if I like what I read, I post about it, with a hat tip link. And as each day passes, my incestuous circle expands just a bit. And because of the readers I want to satisfy, I also make an effort to read more than I normally may have. I grow in that process, and my blog becomes better. Journey, not destination, and all that. Incestuous or not, I enjoy it, and I hope you do as well.
amit varma, 1:00 PM| write to me | permalink | homepage

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