Bloggers on Blogging: Meh

You can read David Appell’s takedown of blogging here; I’m not going to comment on the merits of his arguments because the virtues and sins of blogging have been debated ad nauseum and because frankly I wouldn’t get anything else done today. (Buy me a beer, though, and I won’t shut up about it.) I will say that in the reactions to his post, you can see the ambivalence bloggers you probably know well often have about their own craft. See Yglesias (“I started writing this blog as a hobby; I thought it would be a fun thing to do. And I not only continue to enjoy writing it, but people pay me to write it. But the mere fact that I’m writing it doesn’t make it a worthwhile thing to read, which is why the overwhelming majority of Americans have never read this blog and never will.”) and Zengerle. Other bloggers I’ve talked to in my personal life have confessed the same thing.

I think readers can see this come through in my blogging from time to time as well. Recent quotes from me:

At the end of a post about Bush and McCain both wearing crocs: “I get to blog about presidential footwear. It really is a ridiculous thing.”

At the end of a long post about whether Mitt Romney’s fundraising prowess makes him worthy of consideration as McCain’s VP: “Listen, if you made it through this much horse race speculation, I hope you at least took a moment to check out our debate on the future of America’s Iran policy.”

Which is to say, I hope if you’ve read me, you’ve also read something substantive today.

Stupid but probably necessary disclaimer: The blogosphere is filled with wonderful people and wonderful outlets that combine to do wonderful things. Don’t get me wrong. But you can applaud the macro while lamenting the micro.


Mother Jones was founded as a nonprofit in 1976 because we knew corporations and the wealthy wouldn't fund the type of hard-hitting journalism we set out to do.

Today, reader support makes up about two-thirds of our budget, allows us to dig deep on stories that matter, and lets us keep our reporting free for everyone. If you value what you get from Mother Jones, please join us with a tax-deductible donation today so we can keep on doing the type of journalism 2019 demands.

We Recommend


Sign up for our newsletters

Subscribe and we'll send Mother Jones straight to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.


Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.