Feeds

A Million Nation States of One fears Google Balkanization

Blog Tab or no Blog Tab?

5 things you didn’t know about cloud backup

A consequence of this wonderful publishing tool is that the discourse has proved to be so dreadful. There's a case to be made for Weblogs as the most anti-social software yet devised. No wonder they're so popular with egotists, as the right to speech without consequences reaches its apogee on the web soap box. Compared to bulletin boards, or group discussions, there's no one to temper the conversation, or steer it to more useful outcomes. There is a lot of posturing, however, in this fragmented world of a Million Nation States of One. And as anyone who has tried to follow "the conversation" across dozens of fragments can confirm, it's the antithesis of coherent discussion. So it's revealing that one site which started as a weblog, and dropped the restrictive format in favor of editorial control and a Slashdot-style system, has become a runaway success: DailyKos.

Slashdot members have never liked the blog hype, so it was amusing to see the debate reprised once again.

"Please let this mean that blogs are now excluded from the main google search?? Why can't they add an extra tab (sites, images, news, blogs)?" asks one poster.

"With a Report this blog link?", suggests another.

Later, we learn that a developer is creating a toolbar add-in which appends the indispensible string -inurl:www.livejournal.com -inurl:*.blogspot.com - blog [and so on] to Google queries, so Google can ignore blogs in its search query. It sure beats typing it in every time.

The Balkanization of the internet is something we've covered before: it's happening at a social level, where people opt only speak to other like-minded people, and at the technical level, with subnets only accepting traffic from known and trusted nets. But there's irony aplenty in the notion that a form of communication so atomized becomes marginalized. How could it end up any other way?

In the end, it comes down to what we really want from computer networks, and we can start by adding up what we value already. Harmless amusement at work? Probably. Comfortable shopping? Definitely. Hods of "free" porn and music? Absolutely - and we can even begin to pay the artists who create it.

But as an alternative, escapist universe, it was always going to come up short. Any interaction that requires something like 'humor tags' to work was always going to be several steps behind real human discourse. The mooted Google Blog Tab is simply the world's polite way of telling the utopians to take their toys and move along. ®

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

More from The Register

next story
6 Obvious Reasons Why Facebook Will Ban This Article (Thank God)
Clampdown on clickbait ... and El Reg is OK with this
Kaspersky backpedals on 'done nothing wrong, nothing to fear' blather
Founder (and internet passport fan) now says privacy is precious
TROLL SLAYER Google grabs $1.3 MEEELLION in patent counter-suit
Chocolate Factory hits back at firm for suing customers
Facebook, Google and Instagram 'worse than drugs' says Miley Cyrus
Italian boffins agree with popette's theory that haters are the real wrecking balls
Mozilla's 'Tiles' ads debut in new Firefox nightlies
You can try turning them off and on again
Sit tight, fanbois. Apple's '$400' wearable release slips into early 2015
Sources: time to put in plenty of clock-watching for' iWatch
Facebook to let stalkers unearth buried posts with mobe search
Prepare to HAUNT your pal's back catalogue
Ex-IBM CEO John Akers dies at 79
An era disrupted by the advent of the PC
prev story

Whitepapers

Endpoint data privacy in the cloud is easier than you think
Innovations in encryption and storage resolve issues of data privacy and key requirements for companies to look for in a solution.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Advanced data protection for your virtualized environments
Find a natural fit for optimizing protection for the often resource-constrained data protection process found in virtual environments.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Next gen security for virtualised datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.