Controlled chaos and blog journalism

El Blogador at Inner Diablog (whose interesting posts I often consult in the context of my Buried Mirror research) cites Samuel Pepys and Jean Baudrillard as models for bloggish prose. These writers, he says, “pointed towards to a new style of writing that consciously moves out towards the edge of discussion (or the long tail if you must) often adopting “controlled chaos” as the chosen idiom.” An excerpt:

In terms of both style and content, mainstream journalists and academics tend to be repelled by ‘edgy’ writing like this because they have been trained to move towards and assume control of the centre of the topic they are addressing.

Similarly, many people in the PR industry are perhaps more naturally inclined to the mass market side of communications rather than the long tail. They’d rather be a hub than a node, which is why as a group they tend to waste so much time on Facebook and why, in spite of an apparent knack for the construction of narratives, they have thus far met with mixed success in the new medium.

It’s a highly competitive workplace and the bestseller mentality, wanting to be one, and to work with others in that same category, may be preventing PRs from fully grasping the transformations in their industry.

Blogador’s follow-up post is here.

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  1. I blog regularly and find this insight fascinating. I had not seriously thought about the style but this analysis makes me aware of the more successful bloggers’ styles. Thank you.

  2. I still can’t understand why a blog w/a photo of a dog on a surfboard or someone’s list of what they had for dinner or a 3-line rant against day/night or night/day gets 1.9 million hits and blogs w/quality content get 1 hit. (quality content meaning 300-700 word essays on something, not a diatribe and not a scholarly or technical jargon that is impossible to decipher.