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stipe.jpgWhen asked why R.E.M. never printed their lyrics on their liner notes, Michael Stipe explained that a song is not just the words. It’s the music. And the way the song fits between the song before it and the song after it. And the ambiance and mood of the entire album. I guess also, in the case of Stipe, the sense of mystery about the actual words is emphasised, since he sings like he’s got marbles in his mouth. So I can understand why the question would have been asked.

There’s a similar idea behind why I don’t like reading blogs via RSS feeds. The removal from the overall context means – for me anyway – some of the point is lost. If that weren’t the case, why would so many of us care about the template we use, about the colours and the overall presentation of our sites? The way the words we write fit within the overall page is part of the whole package. It matters.

Maybe that’s why I feel uneasy to find today that someone has been using my words here in lectures recently as part of a university course.



  1. Were they using your work as an example, or as teaching material?

  2. I can understand your adverse opinion to RSS Readers, but personally I think that they are the best invention to go along with Blogs ever.

    If I didn’t use bloglines I would not read half the blogs that I do. For this simple fact alone, I think RSS Readers gives Bloggers a lot more readership.

    But, yes, you are right. There are 2 major downsides with RSS Readers.

    1) You don’t get to see the Blog as it’s intended to be read.
    2) As a blogger you don’t get the stats of who is reading you via the RSS Feed.

    Neither will stop me from using my beloved Bloglines though 🙂

  3. Sclozza, I’m checking to find out.

    Mick, I was infatuated with Bloglines once, but I found that another problem with it is how slowly it updates (which you’d never notice unless you visited the sites you were using Bloglines for) but that just irritated me.

  4. Mick if you use Feedburner to run your feeds, you can monitor feedreader readers (I’m pretty sure)

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