Flash or politics?

Some Macromedian bloggers has raised the issue of “Flash blogs” spamming with political content.

JD started it (as far as I can tell) with his post about “Spamming aggregators“. To you John, I’d like to say: Sorry if you don’t like what I am saying, but from that to accusing me (and others) of spamming aggregators. Come on!

First of all, remember that the Flash blogs are personal blogs from people investing their time and money into keeping the community informed on what is going on — they are not paid to blog, as you are.

Second, if you check out my blog, you will notice that postings are posted to various categories, and if you look at the RDF feed you will notice that the category is listed as “subject” in the XML feed – so its fully up to aggregators if they want to use that feed, AND filter so they only include the Flash content.

Now, David Humphreys and his Flog has deliberately chosen to not filter the content from the “Flash blog”, because as he says

“I learned that flog also allowed me access to a community. It’s impossible to read the blogs without getting a sense of who the bloggers are — and I think that’s a good thing. I don’t mind reading — or skimming — the off-topic rants and raves because that gives me more insight as to who’s out there. We are a community. As we have people who will delight and inform, we also have people who enrage and challenge and go off-topic. Sometimes, they are even the same person. It all has value.”

And I have to agree with him, its worth it to skim through the off-topic postings, at least if you look at the Flash blogs as more than just cheap information channels.

Other weblog postings about the “Spamming aggregators”

Burch Blog: Technology Blogs get Political

Eat Orange : Blog Spam

Eat Orange : Politics and Technology Butt Heads

Daniel Dura : Do Politics and Blogging Mix?

Hollowcube : my thoughts on political blogging

There is also a discussion going on after JD’s initial post

9 thoughts on “Flash or politics?”

  1. I can’t see I have quoted you in any of my postings. But let me quote this: “I don’t know if this is intentional spam, or unintentional spam, but regardless, it comes across as a spamlike breach of the social contract.”

    You probably know better than me what you meant when you wrote that, to me it looks like complaning about “Flash blogs” breaching the “social contract”, in a “spamlike” way.

    It’d be more interesting to hear you say what you actually meant, so we could get to the bottom of the obvious misinterpritation by me and others.

    [Edit, taken out reference to Greg’s blog, where I refered to him as a “fellow Macromedian”, thanks for the correction Mike).]

  2. I wonder what disqualifies every second-day posts about the evils of warez and zombie terrorist world-collapsing trojan horse virus programs as spam?

    Not that I disagree with the message, but either post it in a static section of the website, or stop beating the horse, as it is already dead.

  3. hey jarle, who is the “second macromedia” blogger?

    I think that is a quote from Greg Burch’s site. Greg does not work for Macromedia, and is thus not a

    “Macromedia blogger” (at least not in the way that John or I am).

    mike chambers

    [email protected]

  4. That’s not spam – that’s supporting the developer community! ;)

    (Or a severe case of a certain pot calling another kettle a similar color).

    Besides, isn’t claiming that warez are a terrorist ploy (“there are people out there who want an army of controllable machines for massive denial-of-service attacks during the current war. Don’t give into them… question alien orders!”), discussing the war, even tangentally, on a Flash blog?


  5. Chris, with all due respect, you’re confused in a number of ways.

    — I noted that my experience using someone else’s aggregation choices suddenly felt similar to working through a spam-laden mailbox. That’s it.

    — Those who do install executable code from sites which admit to criminal activity do indeed run significant risks.

  6. As I mentioned in the first post, I don’t disagree with the message – however, I don’t see how frequent posts on the matter (google-bombing), on any blog (see links above), do not add up to spam.

    Perhaps this comes down to a difference of perception – I believe also that the people who are currently sending form-letters to newspapers’ editorial sections as a form of faux-grassroots activism are also spamming.

    I think it’s good to get a discussion about using RSS and meta classification for documents out in the open is a good thing. But I think arguing that sites (which are not public services, but instead personal endeavors) are not delivering the content you are interested in is the wrong way to approach this.

    The mailbox metaphor doesn’t really work here because a mailbox is inherently a personal communication tool – many to one (let’s hope others aren’t reading your mail!). A website is many to many – and as the old saying goes, you can’t please everyone all of the time. Arguing that a website isn’t delivering the content you want to see is like me arguing that Fox News doesn’t deliver all of the anti-war coverage I want to see. I change the channel. Or I can write to the editor.

    Maybe people are taking this too personally – obviously you were attempting to make a point on your personal site, and perhaps stepped on some toes in the highly incestuous world of Flash blogs (not in a bad way) regarding an issue that is very personal to a lot of bloggers. I’ll hang out and watch the discussion develop.

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