What Are Your Anti-Memes?
Posted by Bob Warfield on January 24, 2008
If you read a lot of blogs, as I do, you need to come up with some anti-memes. These are memes (topics if you prefer) that you automatically tune out of as soon as you realize a post is about a meme. I have written before that sometimes you have to run from the Big Memes. That post was about my decision not to write about Facebook Beacon. It was done to death. So many articles, so few insights. A couple paragraphs and you knew what Facebook was doing and why it was wrong or you didn’t care. I had nothing to add there.
So what’s my current list of anti-memes? Here ya go:
– Anything on Davos. Read the first couple of dozen posts in my blog reader and learned absolutely nothing. People there seem incredibly gratified to find themselves rubbing shoulders with Henry Kissinger et al. Seems to be a gawker’s paradise. That’s cool, but I’ve never been much for celebrity gawking, so I’ll leave it to others.
– Lists of links: If you put more than about 3 links in your list, I’ll just delete the message. Sorry, don’t have the time to go further. If you write at least a line about each link, I’ll look a little further.
– Recaps: No time to read recaps. If I didn’t catch it the first time through, it will appear again if it was important.
– Sponsors: Sorry, don’t care. Glad you have ’em.
– Your vacation, new baby, new house, trip report from Australia or wherever, which rock star you think is the second coming, yada, yada. Thanks, I appreciate the need to add a personal touch, but not looking to get that from your blog. I too like personal touches and have two other web sites for the purpose. Note: not trying to tell you to stop, just letting you know I’m skipping that stuff.
– Your art: Yes, you are likely a creative person if you are blogging. But I don’t read your blog to learn about your digital photos or poetry. Pray do continue, for others probably do like those things. I just need to get on with other kinds of articles. BTW, if you had to catch me with something before I can delete the message, a photo is instantly received. Some of you are damned good.
– Politcal posts: Yes, it’s an election year, but I’m not reading your blog for your political insights. Others may be, so feel free to continue. Please don’t be totally annoying by feeling that your success in your chosen career makes you ideally suited to being a political commentator, unless, of course, you are James Carville or someone similar.
– News Regurge: If I read the same story 3 times, my comprehension and recall are good. If those 3 had no new insights, I am probably going to delete #’s 4th on without checking for insights unless the post form factor stands out. If you put a picture and nobody else did or if your post is way longer or shorter than average, I may check to see what’s up.
You get what I’m saying with anti-memes? It’s not an earth shattering idea, but it’s a simple matter of survival in the maelstrom of information that is available. It’s also a matter of knowing what you want to get from other people’s blogs. Everything I listed above is of value to someone, just not to me. Think hard about what you want to get out of blogs as you craft your anti-meme list. That’s really the guiding principle.