Merging the streams

I spent part of this day using WordPress to pull into this particular blog, my old Smooth Pebbles, many of my different online thread of the past 5 years: earlier WordPress blogs, a Tumblr into which I’d earlier pulled a Posterous and an Instagram account and a Twitter account. Even without my main blog — perhaps because it doesn’t include my main blog, Neuron Culture, which has bounced around from home to home — it makes a surprisingly intricate tour through my various obsessions, and the paths left not just by me but some of my compatriots.

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The old print roots of blogging. Mostly SFW

How new, then, is bloggery? Should we think of it as a by-product of the modern means of communication and a sign of a time when newspapers seem doomed to obsolescence? It makes the most of technical innovations—the possibility of constant contact with virtual communities by means of web sites and the premium placed on brevity by platforms such as Twitter with its limit of 140 characters per message. Yet blog-like messaging can be found in many times and places long before the Internet.

Here, for example, is a recent post on The Superficial:

RadarOnline reports “traditional marriage” crusader and former Miss California Carrie Prejean is living in sin with her fiancé Kyle Boller of the St. Louis Rams where they’re no doubt eating shellfish. BURN THEM!

And here is a typical entry from Le Gazetier cuirassé ou anecdotes scandaleuses de la cour de France (1771):

Mlle. Romans is soon to marry M. de Croismare, Governor of the Ecole Militaire, who will use six aides de camp to take his place in performing the conjugal service.