Normal service will be resumed…

The general weirdness and flakiness of Blogger lately (look at my lovely links!) has pushed me over the edge. I’m going to import the whole lot to Movable Type later today. Using the special temporary blogger template the MT people provide for this purpose I don’t even need to set up an RSS feed (thanks to Robin for the research). I don’t want to speak too soon but this could easily be my last day as a user.

What’s wrong with being an elite?

A lot of the debate about the Best British Blog comp seems to centre on this word ‘elite’. Maybe I should have said ‘vanguard’ or ‘enlightened’ or ‘pioneers’ or something. Whatever, something unites the first wave of webloggers and it’s probably their general sort of twitchiness and irony and unease about being tagged ‘elite’. This I can understand. It can make you itch, being pointed at, and vanguard-status brings with it obligations.

The way I see it, elites of this sort are useful, important, probably essential. I reckon TBL is a good role model here. He invented the damn thing after all but his chief function now is as conscience or super-ego or ‘dad’. His moral ‘ownership’ of the web keeps those of us who grub around making a living from it humble. There will be someone like this for weblogs. Maybe it will be Tom Coates.

Sleepless in the blogosphere

Thanks to The Guardian for two consecutive sleepless nights scoring dozens of Great British Weblogs. I’m in awe. Not a turkey among them. I’ve over-dosed on clever, useful, ironic, sometimes geeky and very often inspirational writing, lots of big-hearted link sharing (natch) and some fascinating new thinking on the web, user interfaces and computers. I was worried, to begin with, that the anti-competition might siphon off all the cool entries but there was no danger of that. I think the competition will prove to be a real validation for the new form and, I hope, a springboard for the weblog’s leap into the mainstream. Now, to bed…

Weblogs go mainstream. Some bloggers don’t like it

I’m busy judging entries to The Guardian’s Best British Blog competition. It’s not easy, not least (of course) because these things are weblogs so they’re full of interesting links. As a result, each weblog viewed produces half a dozen unrelated clicks. Early estimates suggest it’ll take me the rest of my life to form an opinion about all of them – I have until the weekend.

Early on in the competition some members of the blogging elite objected. Tom Coates has gone on to set up a kind of anti-competition for the folks who don’t want to enter and want the world to know it. Although I’m pretty sure that all the cool guys are over there with the refuseniks (has it ever been cool to enter competitions?), I think they’re just being snobs.

It’s always difficult to see your clever, groovy, pioneering passion popularised but I’m certain that even the elite would prefer the visibility and influence that competitions like this will provide to obscurity and irrelevance. Meanwhile, if I can figure out how to work this thing, here is Tom’s continually-updated list of refuseniks. Since I can’t enter the official competion, I feel inclined to add bowblog.