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Why NBI?

May 9, 2014

Dear Reader,

I saw Tobold’s post about blogging being a dying thing, and it ruffled me a bit.  It’s not that he’s wrong, necessarily; there are newer and better social platforms on which to stand, but I believe blogging – that is, writing in long form about a topic – provides opportunities that other platforms like Twitter, Streaming, or Vlogs can’t.  Those opportunities may be outdated, but losing them altogether would feel like an awful waste.

I like Twitter well enough.  I tweet.  I think that short-form communication has its place, but I’ve also found that ideas of any real depth can’t be well explained there; the choppy execution means a disconnect between the parts of the idea, which can lead to a loss of interest, misunderstanding, or miscommunication.  Blogs don’t have that problem; you have the time and space you need to really flesh out an idea and make it as pristine as you wish.

Streaming, to me, falls into a similar problem; a lack of preparation and revision.  Streaming is notoriously spur-of-the-moment, and while a video can be later cut and edited, missing material can’t be made up after the fact.  If it’s not there in the stream, then that potential idea or connection is lost.

Vlogs are probably the closest thing to blogging (as the name would suggest), and despite my composition background, I don’t have any problem with scripted videos being used instead of print.  Anita Sarkeesian’s videos, for example, are clearly carefully scripted and edited, and the video format adds to the communication, as the clips and images she shows drive home her points.  However, there’s plenty of vlogs out there that are just rants, unscripted rambling on a topic with no goal or structure.  It’s possible to do that with writing, but the physical act of writing and while your eyes are reading what you’ve written lends itself to the editing process in a way that filming a video that can immediately without review be put up on the Internet does not.

So I support the NBI because whether or not blogging is out of date, I still feel it’s an integral part of our community and the communications within.  Without my blog, I wouldn’t know virtually anyone with whom I play beyond my very immediate gaming circle (my wife and buddy).  I wouldn’t have made all the great “blog friends” I’ve made who bounce ideas off each other or just drop by to say Hi in game.

So I support the NBI because I think it’s one of the many blood vessels that keeps this idea circulatory system flowing.  Could that system exist without?  Probably, but the parts of the gaming community body that it fed would slowly die, which would harm the overall body irreparably.


Stubborn (lifts and supports)

4 Comments leave one →
  1. May 9, 2014 6:23 pm

    When one is doing something for a long, long time and derive no sense of joy or accomplishment from it, and do it more out of a sense of obligation than enjoyment, one’s outlook will be colored by a haze of futility.

    I stopped reading Tobold a long time ago, for that reason, as I’m not into watching people suffer. Whether it’s pride or stubbornness, it’s hard to fathom why people do things they don’t enjoy. It’s harder still to imagine why they feel they must have opinions on others doing the same thing.

    It’s been said, if you do something you love, you will never work a day in your life. Blogging’s got to be like that, or it’s just a waste of time – the readers’ as well as the writer’s. If I had any other advice for new bloggers, it would be: ignore the old farts. They had their chance. Tell ’em to get out of the way or get run over.

    Good article. Cheers!

  2. May 9, 2014 11:46 pm

    TL;DR. Too many characters, not enough video.

  3. Krel permalink
    May 10, 2014 12:59 am

    I think short form text, longform text, scripted video, and unscripted/streaming video all have their place. I don’t really see a huge amount of overlap between them, either – they each really fit a different style and audience. Short form is very good for sharing new discoveries – it’s a great way to share links to other forms of discussion such as a video or blog. it’s certainly not ideal for in-depth exploration of a concept though. I think an argument could be made either way between a blog and a scripted video when it comes to the best way to really dig into the meat of the topic. Perhaps a combination of both might be the best overall solution, a written narrative punctuated with pictures and video.

  4. May 10, 2014 1:39 am

    Despite the ongoing propensity for quick and easy means to convey information, I think there will always be a market for long form writing.

    Each medium, be it blogs, podcast or live streams has its audience and it own respective merits. The in-depth written article is by far the most thorough means to explore and analyse a subject. A video can show something. Words can deconstruct it.

    I think Krel is right by suggesting that combining text, with pictures and videos is possibly the the most accessible path to take as it offers something to all.

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