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The iPad and long-form blogging

Apple Unveils Updated iPad In San Francisco

Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images

In the first product release following the death of Steve Jobs, Apple Inc. introduced the third version of the iPad.

Regular readers of the DeBord Report know that I'm a big fan of/occasionally exasperated by Fred Wilson, a prominent venture capitalist and avid blogger. Fred is a partner at Union Square Ventures in New York, with investments in companies like Foursquare, Disqus, and my new favorite search engine with a silly name, Duck Duck Go.

But Fred also blogs every single day without fail. Recently, he tackled the question of whether mobile devices can replace laptops for workers on the go. For some folks, they already have. I ran into our CEO in the elevator a few weeks back and somehow got to discussing my new briefcase. "This is my briefcase," he said, brandishing his iPad. 

It used to be inconceivable that you'd leave home without your laptop, especially if you had heavy content production on your agenda. I've heard tales of bloggers who can do their thing on tablets and even smartphones, but for the majority, I don't think the adoption of laptop alternatives has been that aggressive.


It's the end of the blogging as we knew it

A Conversation with Joss Whedon Greenroom Panel - 2012 SXSW Music, Film + Interactive Festival

Michael Buckner/Getty Images for SXSW

She's not ready to quit blogging just yet.

DeBord Report (along with some other fine bloggers) gets a nice shout from Reuter's Counterparties, a really cool experiment in media aggregation that Felix Salmon and Ryan McCarthy are overseeing. Effectively, the stand-alone site is a outgrowth of Felix's feed reader, a natural evolution from the "Counterparties" post he used to do every day. This type of round-up post is a familiar feature of the blogosphere — I used to do one called "Reportings."

What's interesting about Counterparties is that it shows that smartly curated content from around the web can form a basis for an entire spinoff media entity, one that runs on a metabolism quite different from a big news site. The New York Times' DealBook pioneered this. Counterparties has added a dash of Gawker Media to the packaging and created something of a mega-blog, minus the dozens of contributors. 


Blog Wars, Part II: A watchdog for bloggers

A Conversation with Joss Whedon Greenroom Panel - 2012 SXSW Music, Film + Interactive Festival

Michael Buckner/Getty Images for SXSW

A South by Southwest attendee at a panel discussion. As you can tell from the uniform, not a blogger.

Blogging is definitely entering a surly, complex middle age. What started out as a frisky means of self-expression, a way to comment on the news of the day, and a highlight reel of the World Wide Web has become a business. And some folks think that the business of blogging is in the business of getting away with whatever it can.

Or they're just...dealing with the fact that blogging-as-business has developed a hyperactive metabolism that provokes infractions.

Take for example Henry Blodget's mea culpa after pasting the Wikipedia entry on the My Lai massacre into a recent blog post at Business Insider. It's no longer pasted in. Because, as Blodget puts it, Gawker freaked out. Maybe Gawker was right to freak out. But then again Blodget does write plenty of posts that are fairly dense with real business analysis, so it's hardly his pattern.