If Everyone’s Talking At Once, Is Anyone Listening?

I loved this cartoon on Hugh’s Blog the other day. If you’re still under the delusion that blogs are about the conversations that the Cluetrain imagined, you’re in for a rude awakening!

For starters, who has the time to read even the stuff that’s actually worth reading (such as the Z List), forget the scores of new blogs cropping up every minute? If you actually are trying to do stuff like run a business or have a life, it’s daunting at best.

Secondly, even if you comment on one of these blogs, the blog owner/editor will generally publish the comments that will further strengthen their point of view. It’s as forgettable as the bulletin board back in High School (unless you’re in student council)

But mostly, the information is not quickly applicable when I most need it. In other words, unless I decide to make an ongoing investment by adding your blog to my RSS reader and spend more time I don’t have interrupting my day with your feeds, the wisdom is lost into the ether as fast it appeared. So what to do?

Are good blogs valuable? Absolutely! Do I get to read my growing blogroll regularly? No. Am I missing out? Am I under informed? No and maybe but so be it.

Those of us honest enough to admit that blogs are an exercise in our own narcissism may be closer to getting more value from the wealth of info available online. Once you realize that, the information has a clearer context and thus easier to filter.

So my next question is:

Are connection economy markets really about conversation or is it about the end result of what conversations in real life achieve?

The end result of conversation in the real world is intelligence. We learn stuff about each other when we talk. In a hyper connected world, can that not also happen by seeing the choices we make and the patterns that emerge from them?

So maybe it’s actually one step further:

Markets are about the exchange of intelligence.

3 Responses to “If Everyone’s Talking At Once, Is Anyone Listening?”

  1. # Blogger C. B. Whittemore

    Ray, thanks for including Flooring [The Consumer] in your blogroll. Markets are absolutely about the exchange of intelligence!  

  2. # Anonymous Doug Karr

    I would respectfully disagree. For a few reasons:
    1. I just read your entry.
    2. You've started a conversation and I'm responding.
    3. I make time to read from those I admire. It's much like having a mentor or coach at my side every day. Every day they provide me with tidbits of information that have helped to make them successful.

    Narcissistic? No.
    Selfless? Absolutely. Many folks, like myself, plan quite a bit of time on their entries. I check to see what other folks are thinking about a topic, read their blogs, then sometimes I simply throw a link on my feed that points to them OR if I feel strongly I will join the conversation.

    You see, the conversation is not on YOUR blog, it's on the blogosphere, itself.

    I like "exchange of intelligence". Has a nice ring. But it's still everyone's individual voice that are coming to the 'conversation' through their blog.

    Warmest Regards,

  3. # Blogger Ray Podder

    Thanks very much for the comments.

    Doug, I believe what you're saying is just as true and I especially appreciate the fact that the "conversation" is on the blogosphere itself.

    My intent with this post was more about signal to noise ratio and the "what" our conversations are ultimately about... Though I agree there is some selflessness in sharing our thoughts, the fact that you're on my blogroll and I'm about to publish my thoughts with this comment in a public sphere is really still more about our needs over the greater good in my humble opinion.  

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