Monday, April 17, 2006

The New Blogging Rules

NOTE: The following post is sarcastic -- I believe discussion is very important and think people should use their blogs to write about whatever is on their minds. I also don't beleive a critique of work is a baseless personal attack. I usually don't "flag" sarcastic posts -- but a few people have indicated a straight reading of it and I want to be clear.

1. Never voice an observation or critique of anything on your blog unless you're using your powers in bigger ways to change things. Do not discuss. Nobody cares. Especially not your readers who visit your blog everyday.

For example, don't voice your disapproval of the war in Iraq on your blog unless you're actively organizing and participating in protests on Washington (protests in your stoopid meaningless town don't count -- hello, the people who decide these things are in Washington), offering your expertise for The O'Reily Factor and arranging meetings with Rumsfeld (well, how do you know he's not going to see you unless you TRY?).

George Bush, Dick Cheney and Condi Rice do not read your blog.

2. Consider any less than positive comment or critique of your work or project you are involved as a baseless personal attack.

I'm talking to you, Jordan, I read your blog post about today's NTM poem and all I have to say is if you want those handcuffs removed -- get off your fat duff and do it yourself! Don't wait for anyone else to do it for you. Watch out next time we meet, I'm the crazy-wedgie-giving-girl your parents warned you about.


At 9:50 PM, Blogger didi said...

There is another rule you forgot to mention. Link to whomever you are talking about so the rest of the knucklbrains can go see for themselves whatever it is we are not supposed to be mentioning.

At 9:52 PM, Blogger Reb said...

Good point. I would link to Jordan's post -- but he took it down this afternoon.

At 11:06 PM, Blogger you suck said...

Yeah--that's right Reb. Why bother doing anything about it? Great stuff! Keep it up! You're such a goddamned inspiration.

Today I pitched a story to PW about Women Poetry Bloggers! How was your day?


At 12:29 AM, Blogger JWG said...


i read that a bit differently.

If you arent doing something about it, dont act like you are. get after it, or dont.

Didn't see Jordan's post.

I just wish someone would tell me how i can win. I'd like to turn a 6-4-3 inning ending double play on all you suckas.


jim goar

At 12:56 AM, Blogger Reb said...


To be clear, I was joking -- I have no issue with Jordan's now deleted blog mention of NTM. I brought it up because it was the most recent example of someone critiquing something I'm involved with -- I get a fair amount of that since I publish other people's work, publish my own work and blog -- most of the critiques are thoughtful and a few are not. Everytime we put something out there -- poem, article/essay, book, blog post -- it's open to discussion.

So I have no problem voicing my own opinions here and don't see why I should not use my own blog to write about whatever is on my mind.

At 9:24 AM, Blogger you suck said...

Yeah...well I come from a tradition in which we change the things we can change and accept the things we can't. A letter to PW, a special women blogging issue of MIPO or sending a copy of your anthology to the NEW YORK TIMES BOOK REVIEW certainly does seem like something that could be accomplished. Will that mean you'll definitely be reviewed by the NYTIMES? No. But you definitely won't BE if you don't send.

Go ahead and get bloggy with it. No one is arguing that one cannot rage on one's blog about the things. But if there are real issues, like the weeklong witch-burning of the PW guy, it seems less useful to just rage about it here. What else can you do. I did pitch a story to PW about women poetry bloggers. If you want inclusion you can ask to be included. To the people that run the magazine. Who probably don't read this blog.

I never asked to be in PW--you can't rely on dumb luck for all your press. For someone who has been claiming on their blog that they ought to do whatever they can to get their work and the work they believe in out there, you seem to be hesitant to follow up your concerns on Women Poetry Bloggers being excluded from a Trade Magazine. Why?

I sent a book to the President and they sent a form letter back. To think that anyone on earth is really beyond your reach is defeatist. If you really did want to meet with Rumsfeld or Condi, I'm sure there would be a way--you're a smart and resilient person.


At 9:34 AM, Blogger you suck said...

PS: A good recent example is the Flarf review in JACKET--Gary turned that into a Flarf feature in JACKET. Turning a negative into a positive: because he asked the editor...and now there's a lot of great Flarf poems over there. Not just because it was bitched about on blogs (everyone's favorite blogsport). But because someone took the time to write a brief e-mail to someone in charge.


At 9:36 AM, Blogger Jordan said...

Hi Reb. I was trying out a new poetry-du-jour thing to see if I could talk about whatever was out there instead of whatever I was magnetically attracted to. Turns out I could not, or anyway not without snarking it up.

I do think it was odd for that poem to go from hot to post-coital without showing the action, but why go there.

Now as for this idle wedgie threat...

At 10:10 AM, Blogger Reb said...


Idle wedgie threat? OK, you got me. I was only using your comment as an example cause it was "fresh" in my head -- I didn't take it as a personal agenda or attack -- just an observation and opinion, one I don't agree with, but perfectly respectable nonetheless and yours to make. No blood feud on my end.

Now if there's a blood feud on your end, please back channel -- I'm keeping a spreadsheet with all the poets who hate me -- just so I can keep all these personal agendas straight.


At 10:34 AM, Blogger you suck said...


Maybe you--or others--are having trouble figuring out what to say in a letter to PW. You can use this as a template.

Dear PW,

I read with interest Craig Tiecher's recent article about poetry websites and poetry online. I was disappointed, however, that more women were not included in that piece. Women blog, women edit great magazines. Some of my favorite sites are [site name], [site name] and [site name]. I run a blog at [site name] and run a magazine at [site name] and I think that PW piece was a little too slanted toward making it sound like men ruled the roost.

Ron Silliman and Josh Corey's sites are quite good: it's good that they appeared in PW. Teicher featured a site that hosts a cartoon entitled "Stone Cold Poetry Bitches." That space would have been better used to mention Mipo or [internet venture] instead of devoting more column space to that questionable dude. What kind of message is that to the kids reading PW? That they're bitches?? That's no good.

Please consider a follow-up story in the near future about some of the sites I mention. All the fun is not happening at the boy blogs. Women are crucial and important contributors to all on-line conversations.

Be well,
Betty & Veronica

You can adapt that to fit your own tastes--good luck--



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