aku-aku: v.. To move a tall, flat bottomed object (such as a bookshelf) by swiveling it alternatively on its corners in a "walking" fashion. [After the book by Thor Heyerdahl theorising the statues of Easter Island were moved in this fashion.] source: LangMaker.com. Aku Aku also has another meaning to the islanders: a spiritual guide.
« geo-lookup | Main Page | SF Health Code Map »
public, private, secret
Posted by dav at 2003 October 14 10:27 AM
File under: Geek

A pithy essay over at Danny O'Brien's Oblomovka examines how the use of the web to mediate conversations, and in particular blogs, has altered the available communication modes so that the private mode is disappearing.


The problem here is one (ironically) of register. In the real world, we have conversations in public, in private, and in secret. All three are quite separate. The public is what we say to a crowd; the private is what we chatter amongst ourselves, when free from the demands of the crowd; and the secret is what we keep from everyone but our confidant. Secrecy implies intrigue, implies you have something to hide. Being private doesn't. You can have a private gathering, but it isn't necessarily a secret. All these conversations have different implications, different tones.

[.....]

This is why, incidentally, people hate blogs so much. My God, people say, how can Livejournallers be so self-obsessed? Oh, Christ, is Xeni talking about LA art again? Why won't they all shut up?

The answer why they won't shut up is - they're not talking to you. They're talking in the private register of blogs, that confidential style between secret-and-public. And you found them via Google. They're having a bad day. They're writing for friends who are interested in their hobbies and their life. Meanwhile, you're standing fifty yards away with a sneer, a telephoto lens and a directional microphone. Who's obsessed now?


I think another problem with blogs is that their 'register' is often murky, even to the blog owner. Occasionally I blog things that are mostly just notes to myself or close friends, therefore private. But then when I have something that I think is interesting for the general public, my blog is the natural place to post it.

Comments:

Post a new comment:

Thanks for signing in, . Now you can comment. (sign out)

(If you haven't left a comment here before, you may need to be approved by the site owner before your comment will appear. Until then, it won't appear on the entry. Thanks for waiting.)


Remember me?