October 17, 2005
The Dance Blogosphere
In a tangential remark in the comments on the dance blogosphere and its comparative quiet, Rachel of downtowndancer mentions something I’ve been thinking about for a while. Compared to other special interest blogging, dance blogging is relatively rare and at times, barely blogging.
Right now, it’s operating on a skeleton crew. Tobi Tobias has taken time off from blogging until the end of October. Brendan McCarthy just went on hiatus. But there’s more to this than frequency. It’s a question of community. Several of the dance bloggers, including myself, Tobias, Rachel Howard and Alexandra Tomalonis (whose blog is also sadly inactive) are already professional writers and that creates a different dynamic. For instance, what Tobi is doing is a blog in name only. It’s her usual incisive and skilled writing, which is enough for me, but it’s a column of the sort she has written most of her career rather than a blog. There’s no comment section and no links, which are unique features of blogging and the engine to get a discussion and community going.
Some of this could be because of the strength of the dance discussion boards and news sites. Dance blogs will have to find the niche not filled by places like Ballet Talk, DanceView Times, Ballet.co, Critical Dance or Dance Insider. One thing blogs could be is a bridge between dance communities. Few of the sites above are collegial with one another, unfortunately often for justifiable reasons.
I’m with Rachel in hoping that the dance blogosphere starts getting the critical mass in conversation to get some real discussions going. If you’re out there and blogging on dance, please let me know - in the comments, so that everyone else knows, too. I’ll be happy to add you to my reading list. Maybe dance bloggers could get a web ring going. I’m glad we haven’t gotten into the hair pulling and shouting that goes on in the political blogosphere, but fer chrissake, look at the size of the community that follows my friend Stephanie Pearl-McPhee’s blog on knitting. Are dance enthusiasts really that much smaller a number?
Speaking of the political blogosphere, one of the sharpest hair-pullers around, James Wolcott, once again blogs on dance with a favorable mention of Roger Copeland’s book on Merce Cunningham. Kudos to Wolcott for insisting that dance is something that every culturally literate person should be interested in.
Posted by Leigh Witchel at October 17, 2005 7:21 PM
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Leigh Witchel writes: In a tangential remark in the comments on the dance blogosphere and its comparative quiet, Rachel of downtowndancer mentions something I’ve been thinking about for a while. Compared to other special interest blogging, dance blog... [Read More]
Tracked on October 18, 2005 5:40 PM
In my own case, Leigh, I find I'm incoherent about dance once other parts of my life start to demand attention. I was prolific when I was a graduate student - and I miss being nourished in that way.
Posted by: Brendan McCarthy at October 19, 2005 5:32 AM