Greg Laden, whom you might know from The Blogosphere, makes a good case that blogging about science, skepticism, et cetera, can actually help resolve long-standing questions a hell of a lot faster than traditional methods:
Someone is always wrong on the Internet. The idea that the most free-wheeling part of the Internet–blogs–would be a place where conflict is resolved seems laughable. The detachment of argument from social cues normally used to moderate our conversations combined with the intentional sloughing off of civil norms means that the only resolution that happens here might be the screen resolution of your computer. It would be easy to say that the Internet is where conflict is born, not resolved.
But that would miss an important point.
Almost all the conflicts I’ve observed in this milieu are problems that were already out there somewhere but in many cases hidden and thus unacknowledged. We can ask, if a conflict resides latent in meatspace, does it make a noise? And the answer is:
Go find out what the answer is.
Or just head over to tell him that he’s wrong.
One thought on “News flash: blogs touching off firestorms IS actually helping!”
Jason, thanks for the pointer . By the way, if anyone had tried to leave a comment there, the commmenting technology was apparently turned off or broken until a few minutes ago. So you can go there now and yell at me if you like.
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