Rivers…

When David Sifty (he of Technorati) was quoted in the Economist as referring to the text of blogs as a “river of human chatter,” it sounded strangely familiar. Then I remembered Jia’s poetic construction in our paper for the Web Ecosystem (pdf): ” A single personal website could be submerged in a mighty torrent of millions of other similar sites, and the seeming triviality of its content might well lead to it being neglected.”

There is something going on with this river and flood metaphor. It seems that “river” is the word used for a gathering of posts (kinda like a pride of lions or a murder of crows: “a river of posts”).

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  1. […] Alex (His Grace) comments on the metaphor of web content, specifically blog entries, as a river. I’m always intrigued by a good metaphor, so I’d like to dig a little further on this one. It seems that there’s a notion that blog posts or the content of small sites could get lost in this river of content. While I agree that this is, in a way, a sad truth, it’s also an important and defining feature of rivers. Whether we speak of the individual molecules of water or the life that exists within a river ecosystem, those small pieces, which are in a sense lost on the large scale of the river, are nonetheless, essential parts of that river. […]

  2. […] Perhaps an original article comes out from me once or twice a month, but my everyday blogging formula involves thrawling my giant RSS net and picking the “best fish” off the web. Speaking about fishing, haven’t you heard how blogs are “liquid” in nature? My recent conversation with a BlogBridge developer revolved on Dave Winer’s “River of News” concept. Also, Alex Halavais not too long ago talked about David Sifty (Technorati) being quoted in the Economist as referring to the text of blogs as a “river of human chatter”. His graduate student, Jia Lin, also wrote a poetic construction of the Web Ecosystem which said “A single personal website could be submerged in a mighty torrent of millions of other similar sites, and the seeming triviality of its content might well lead to it being neglected”. […]

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