Tuesday, January 4

Book Review:Blog

Hugh Hewitt has a new book, Blog: Understanding the Information Reformation. Mine came Monday and last night I had a chance to look at it. To cut to the chase, I have mixed feelings about this book. For a number of interest groups this book is a must read. For example those in contact with the current media in their daily livelihood and those who are curious about the "blogosphere" and "bloggers" really should buy and read this book. On the other hand, if you are a blogger (or have been reading blogs for some time now), this book will be less a less compelling read, for while there are interesting points made, much of what he says isn't new. One other (alas smaller) category of reader will really enjoy this. If you are a one of the big bloggers, you probably get to see your blog, link, and real name in a genuine hardcopy hardback printed book, which has to be a little titillating.

So what is the book about? Well in brief
  • The introduction starts with a quick overview of the impact blogging had on the last election and how it has started to replace many of the aspects of the MSM
  • Then he goes into a more detailed exposition of the specific events involving bloggers in the last election discussing the blogosphere's role from Trent Lott to RatherGate.
  • Mr Hewitt then draws analogies with the Reformation (Gutenberg, Luther, and Calvin) to the blogger/internet information revolution wherein the information control held by a few has been broken up and shattered into a million pieces. Pandora's box is open? How shall we live with it?
  • Then after a quick chapter on what makes bloggers blog (which I will deal more with on another post tonight)
  • He then has useful information for the non-blogging corporate and government based decision makers on how they might utilize blogging to their advantage.
  • Two appendices follow. Appendix A contains columns posted on WorldNetDaily.com by Mr Hewitt over the last years about blogging.
  • Appendix B Mr Hewitt solicited the blogosphere for information on who and how often many bloggers checked various sites. He recounts some of the replies.

Finally to recap, this book is a quick read, it took me less than an hour. It is well written and organized, after all a blogger put it together. It puts in print a quick history of the blogger who influence the last election and has some insightful ideas about how blogging may be used for good and ill by the movers and shakers of the world. He pounds a few times the plea for the influential bloggers of the blogosphere to up their advertising rates so that the little guys can start making real money too. He also thinks that will be inevitable. He has a little advice for how to get your own blog started. Amusingly enough part of his advice, i.e., is to check out the posts on how to blog by Joe Carter for example. Joe's HOWTO on blogging is by his own admission be better than what Mr Hewitt gives in the book.