The argument goes like this. The really popular blogs are not analytical enough, and tend to be echo chambers for media style gossip. Ergo they impoverish blogging.OK. I'll try:
The post on Westminster Wisdom was sparked by this post by Sunny on Pickled Politics. The post was titled "Challenging the elites, and the blogs" and made the same point about the current state of UK blogs and also goes on to the say that there is elitism in the NGOs, think tank etc towards blogs because of their impoverished debate level as already mentioned.
Isn't it wonderfuly amusing, and dare I say beautifuly ironic to see someone bemoaning blogs for being tabloid and requesting that debate be raised to higher purpose analysis away from the dumbed down masses, whilst simultaneously moaning about elitism outside the world of blogs?
I would agree that "really popular blogs are not analytical enough, and tend to be echo chambers for media style gossip." Not blogs in general, but really popular blogs. In the case of political blogs, you have to do something to become really popular, it seems. You have to provide a hospitable place for trolls in your comments box and you have to write knockabout posts that simplify and personalise issues.
There are plenty of sites that don't chose to do this though. Dizzy will have seen one of these when he visited Westminster Wisdom - and there are plenty more to chose from if he could tear himself away from the fuckwits in Iain Dale's sidebar for a bit longer.
The next observation - that "there is elitism in the NGOs, think tank etc towards blogs because of their impoverished debate level as already mentioned" - is hardly a difficult one to understand. NGOs and think-tankists do turn away from the blogosphere rapidly because it takes a while to realise that there is a world beyond the more popular herd of independent minds that make up the popular blogs.
If NGOs and Think Tanks were more aware of the less popular sites - the ones that aren't that interested in attracting hordes of spEak You're bRaines types, then this would change.
As I said yesterday, the reasons that is is not massively rewarding to use blogs in an interesting, deliberative way may dissolve into thin air when the technology gets better at back-tracking and collaborative filtering. Then, maybe, the people who are actually paid to wonk may find time to ferret out the good stuff that we amateurs have been reading for ages.