I went to see a talk by pop culture author Chuck Klosterman tonight at the UW Memorial Theater. I\’ve read a couple of his books, and thought he was worth checking out.
He made an interesting point when talking about fame, and how the bar has been lowered for who is now considered \”famous.\” This fact, I think, is indisputable – but he actually had a salient point linking it to blogging.
The point was this – when bloggers start a blog, they essentially declare themselves a public figure. Whether you have 10 readers a day or 10,000, you have made yourself \”eligible\” for fame. You are in the realm. As a result of this decision to live your life in public, you tend to think of anyone who has more readers than you do as more \”famous.\” If I get 100 readers a day, and my friend Jay gets 200, I consider him to be famous – and since there are millions of bloggers, there tends to be millions of people who are gaining both real and imagined fame in cyberspace. If that makes any sense.
He also made some other points worth mentioning. He commented on a strange phenomenon with regard to the presidential campaign: that you won\’t find very many Democrats that will say that Barack Obama is more qualified to be president than Hillary Clinton – yet you find a lot more Democrats who really want Obama to be president. A really strange disconnect, if you think about it.
I also agree 100% with some points he made about the internet and its effects on music. Basically, he said that too much music goes unappreciated in the era of CD burning and downloading. Back in the day, if you spent your hard-earned money on a tape, you would really put the effort into liking that album, since you invested cash in it. Now, you can get so much more music for free, it\’s hard to really feel any connection to it – if it doesn\’t hit you after one listen, you can always just move on to something else. This could spell the death of the complete album, and could dissuade artists from recording anything that takes repeat listens to appreciate.
Then I came home.