Thursday, August 02, 2007

10 blogs i don't (like to) read

isn't making a list of links so fun? and there's no better way to make a comeback than by making enemies. =P

before i list the blogs that i don't like, it is important to note that just because i don't like them doesn't mean that i am discouraging you to read them. very often, my dislike for certain blog has got to do with my own personal tastes and preferences, and little to do with the actual quality, or lack thereof, of content.

also, just because i don't like the blog, doesn't mean i don't read the blog. on an important issue which is "hot" around the plogosphere, i usually read as many articles as i can find by whoever blogs about such an issue, just to get a good gauge of what different people think, and to expose myself to different point of views. sometimes, a particular comments thread on a single blog article might be the location for a particularly fierce debate, and I usually would follow the debate (assuming it got my attention in the first place) even if it is on a blog i don't like.

but on to more fun stuff:

Mr Wang Says So
when i first entered the plogosphere, Mr Wang was one of my favorite reads; it is still the favorite read of many people. there are many good qualities to Mr Wang's blog: he has amazing clarity and communicates effectively. he is also a very intelligent chap, and his persona generates much appeal to the average blog reader. nevertheless, several bloggers (most recently InSpir3d) are lamenting that in recent months, Mr Wang has moved his blogging focus away from social-political issues and more on self-help. that is not why i don't like to read Mr Wang. it's just that over time, i just started to not like the dude, that's all. =)

A Xeno Boy in Sg
if there is anyone more revered than Mr Wang in the plogosphere, it is Xenoboy. sorry, but i don't like him either. there was a time when i really adored Xenoboy, and he was once in my blogroll but not anymore. i used to think, and i still do, that he writes the most artistic and beautiful prose on the plogosphere. Xenoboy himself, is a really deep thinker, and it is good to pay attention to what he says. nevertheless, what i don't appreciate about him is that you can't really engage him and have discussion about his views. while i appreciate his artistry and his intelligence, i don't like his lack of clarity, and his sheer cheem-ness. while he has a right to express himself, i think he is doing no favors to those of us who believe that the plogosphere is a place to listen carefully and critically to each other's ideas and to engage each other in civil and rational discourse.

P65 and Young PAP Blog
actually, if i were to write a critical review of these two blogs, i would consider them to be fairly good blogs (sans shoot-myself-in-the-foot articles by Nicholas Lazarus), and i am rather impressed by how they are not just propagandist fluff. nevertheless, there are two important reasons why myself (and probably others like myself) don't read these blogs. firstly, they don't update regularly. it is okay not to blog regularly when you are xenoboy, because hundreds of netizens will salivate over each rare article you write. but when you are from the PAP, and actually hope to increase your influence over the blogosphere, you need to publish often, and publish good articles. secondly, as far as i can tell, these blogs are kept "out of the loop" as far as the plogosphere netizens are concerned. i.e., other blogs in the plogosphere do not talk about, or link to, these two blogs. (again, sans shoot-myself-in-the-foot articles.) you can only generate influence when people read you, and whether or not people read you is largely dependent on how many people connect to you. two ways they can fix this: write controversial stuff (like Nicholas Lazarus), or write good articles and publish often. not easy, but those are the cards dealt to the ruling party. i've said it before, the plogosphere is hostile territory. you do not have home advantage here.

on a separate but related point. i think InSpir3d is the most powerful person in the plogosphere right now. being the lone individual to decide what goes on or not goes on Intelligent Singaporean means he has direct influence over the minds of hundreds of netizens. this could be quite scary if you happen to know that InSpir3d himself is some young chap around my age. nevertheless, i think he's been doing a great job so far.

why i do not read TOC is partly due to the fact that i was on a hiatus the past 3 months, which was when TOC started growing and becoming very popular. all credit to TOC for doing (what i believe to be) the right moves: getting high profile individuals like Yeo Toon Joo and Leong Sze Hian on board, Andrew Loh ceding ownership of TOC to maintain a non-partisan image, and getting Ephraim Loy on board to help create balance. all very good. credit to them for their hard work and being a more successful and popular blog than 4 months ago, although i suspect the void left by Gayle and Kitana helped to increase their popularity. all very good. but still i don't like them. trivially, i don't like the way their blog looks. i don't like the color scheme, and i find the many links and small pictures too gaudy. perhaps less trivially, i find a number of their articles, while worth reading, contain much angst. perhaps Ephraim can help change that. we'll see.

Winter Is Coming
i think Ned is a nice guy. i really do. and speaking as someone who has had the opportunity to meet and interact with many bloggers offline, it is really not that easy to find nice guys in the plogosphere. that said, i'm sorry Ned, i'm not extremely fond of your blog. [i am in ingrate. Ned wrote a really nice article about me some more. =(] a big reason, like for TOC, was that i was on a hiatus the past 3 months, which was when Ned's blog grew in popularity. i also have trvial reasons why i don't like Ned's blog...i don't like his avatar =P, [talking about which, i don't like BL's avatar either, but i got used to it =P] and i don't like the stuff about "Lord of Winterfell, Warden of the North..." etc etc. sorry dude =(. also, he has 30 names on his blogroll, but i'm not one of them. =(. that's why i don't like. muahahahaha. =P.

[Ned, i'm sure you're reading this. what to have coffee sometime? we can invite Aaron, or whoever else you like to hang out with. drop me an email.]

George Yeo's blogs
i think no explanation are necessary here. although i am rather sympathetic towards BG George Yeo. i think he does try hard. =\

Diary of A Singaporean Mind
i have a great deal of respect for Lucky Tan. in his comments on other blogs, he has shown himself to be very intelligent as well as possessing a strong love for our nation. although i feel that his blog is a must-read for people who are new to the plogosphere, i have a hard time appreciating his sense of satire. also, like with xenoboy, satire pokes fun at an issue, but is not particularly useful if you are interested in engaging and understanding alternative points of view. i think it is more the fault of the medium than the author, and to his credit, satire is not something easy to write at all (you try lah!).

Anything from the Brotherhood Press
as we all know, anything we say about the brotherhood is very sensitive =X. i am not advocating or encouraging anybody to be less than civil to the members of the brotherhood (or any blogger, for that matter). i am just saying some people like to read stuff from the brotherhood, i am just not one of them.


Ned Stark said...


Pai seh, i forgot to add u, though i keep popping into ur site. Not to worry it shall be rectified. Anyway I dun mind coffee:) In fact i am an addict.

Aaron said...

OMG, you listed the brotherhood in your top 10 list of blogs that you don't like. I shall pray for your blog now. Amen.

BL said...


Hmmm, did you pick this up from Xiaxue who recently did a list of 7 bloggers (including herself) that she hate? Anyway, the avatar is of sentimental value for me since I have used it back from the days of web 1.0 (online forums) till I enter the blogosphere. :)

BL said...

One more thing, if u are meeting Ned Stark, count me in.

LuckySingaporean said...

Thanks for not liking my blog.

The best way to "engage" pple in issues is a forum.

Obviously, my blog attract alot of 'converted' which is not too good for people who want to engage - sad to say there were some who got flame on my blog which I totally don't control or manage the comments. Anyway, anyone who ask a question will probably get an answer.

There are many "heavy duty blogs" that give people a concussion when they read. I decided not to have such a blog.

Fearfully Opinionated said...

Lucky Tan,

I hope you are not offended by my including your blog on this list. I understand that different people blog for different purposes. I am not saying that your blog is a BAD blog, or that you should change the way you blog. I am just saying that it does not suit my own personal tastes and preferences.

I am of the opinion that as long as we hope to be taken seriously as social-political bloggers, we should have room in our blogs for engagement and discourse among differing views. I refer to "engagement" here as reasoned dialogue, and not fistfights or flame wars. [However, it is true that the latter is also likely to occur.]

If you disagree with this opinion of mine, I respect that, and I hope that we can agree to disagree. I certainly did not imply any lack of respect when I said that I "dislike d" your blog.

kwayteowman said...

Fearfully Opinionated,

Wah lao. The KTM was shocked when he read this entry. :-)

It's fun to get flamed sometimes, but what you're doing is pretty foolhardy. :-P

You forgot to add the KTM to the list 'cos the KTM hasn't been writing.... but that's because his KT stall was broken... but hor, even though the KT stall miraculously fixed itself, not sure that the KTM will henceforth be writing much either. :-P


sad to say there were some who got flame on my blog which I totally don't control or manage the comments

Referring to Bart and the KTM? :-P Dun worry lah. Those who venture there (and get flamed) either know what to expect, or are being stupid, or both. :-)