Monday, August 14, 2006

Jorge, Smitty and eWink

There I was, locked in quiet combat with a blinking cursor when a great and terrible trembling overtook my upstairs lair. Suddenly, the lava lamp simmering to my left threatened to topple and before I realized it was hot I almost reached out to steady it. That’s when the first jolts hit me, sending shards of blue lightning skittering across my wrinkled Hawaiian shirt. Before I can think to react it is over and I find myself slumped in the dying light. It is then I realize I have just experienced a great disturbance in the Force, as if millions of voices cried out in terror and were suddenly silenced.

Okay, maybe I’m overselling it, but the truth of the matter is photog-bloggers are dropping like Imperial Stormtroopers and it’s getting this Jedi down. First, Jorge Guapo rides off into the sunset with little more than a discernible grunt, then the mercurial Erin Winking shutters his site amid a clatter of corporate posturing…now the formidable Smitty, an insatiable communicator and photog-vlogging pioneer announces he’s done with the practice of occasional dispatch. What gives? Why have these three once vibrant sites sputtered to such an unceremonious halt? The answers are as different as the three men themselves, but the end result is the same:

The Photogra-blogosphere is shrinking. For as long as I’ve operated this humble site, the ’Photogs Who Blog’ section has steadily grown - with news shooters from around the nation and globe adding their viewpoints to the mix. That didn’t surprise me, as most news shooters I know are excellent storytellers and it’s only natural that they take to the web along with every other sector of the planet. But to lose three of our more stalwart voices in such a short period of time, well, I didn’t see that coming. Now that I think about it though, I kind of understand.

Blogs are incredibly easy to set up, but somewhat difficult to maintain. While we all harbor noble intentions of adding to them often, little things like family, work, home and self constantly keep us from weighing in with any regularity. That certainly includes me - as the hens in my roost insist I play an ongoing part in their daily lives, thus keeping me from concocting as many narratives as I might wish. That’s how it should be, I guess but it does pain me to neglect this weirdly addictive process of adding to this site - even if I’m doing so in the name of family, health and fortune. A time or two I’ve considered pulling the plug myself, but have refrained due to my twisted literary ambitions and fragile ego.

How long I will feel the need to push-button publish remains unseen, but I suspect it will be a while. Hopefully, new and old voices will join me in the dissection and lampooning of my once noble craft. Turnover, I take it, is only natural. But to lose three vibrant sites in such short order is reason for pause - even if I have no idea where this discussion is leading us. Simply put, downsizing sucks. Now if you’ll excuse me, I have to go scour the recesses of my day for something to blog about tonight: maybe an existential rant on the power of the press - or a goofy picture of me in a bad haircut - or a scathing expose on the number of ketchup packets in my news unit's floorboard - or a...well, you get the idea. Maybe those guys were right...


ewink said...

Can I vote for the bad haircut picture?

Anonymous said...

Yep, sad times are upon us. But new photogs are blogging away; allow me to recommend "Gonzo Photog", for some of the best in bitter blogging. Fun stuff.

Corporate Management