Wednesday, November 10, 2004

Starblogs, Sexblogs, Shamblogs

I was at NP yesterday talking with an insightful friend about blogging, and we soon started commenting on xiaxue's blog, said to be the most popular Singaporean blog. Both of us agreed that the quality of her recent posts has dropped (by our tastes).

I was first attracted to her blog because of her interesting observations, sense of humour, and good writing voice (even though not always grammatically correct). Her recent posts, however, have become rather inane and too silly for my liking.

Too much pressure from too much fame?

But it seems like her blog is still getting the hits. My guess is once a blog or blogger reaches star status with a sizable fan base, it is no more crucial to have consistently good content. Look at Mr Brown's blog, another Singaporean starblog. Great posts have become precious few. My friend thinks it's got something to do with his wife and kid. He may be right.

But back to the starblog of xiaxue...

"You know that they're in trouble when they start adding sex in it," my friend observed.

Quite true. Sex sells, and xiaxue's recent posts seems to have a tad more sexual content.

Then just now, I find this guy's blog - check out the dickchan blog at blogspot if you have a strong stomach - I refuse to link to it as this is a family-friendly blog =)

My blog has been around longer than his, has more posts, and I would argue, a little more "intelligent" posts, but I'm only getting a fraction of his pageviews! I console myself by thinking that I'm refusing to pander to the sexual cravings of the mindless majority. Then I find myself reading his posts and getting disgusted by such a skank specimen of humanity, yet somehow I'm compelled to read on, until I exhaust all his (thankfully few) posts. Human interest?

Then I remember some of the sexblogs I've come across. Sometimes I can't help but wonder if some of these are for real, for at least some of these must be shamblogs, especially those with masculine origins. But would someone create a sexblog which is a shamblog hoping to reach starblog status? I think so...

I think this leads somewhere, but I'm not sure where so I'll just stop here. I hope no one gets offended by my xiaxue and Mr Brown comments; no malicious intent there =)


Blogger Mr Miyagi said...

Yep. Think I'm gonna put more sex and violence in my posts.

2:22 PM  
Blogger FF said...

What attracts me to blogs is not sex, but real life events. I can relate to entries about love, heartache, romance, boss-hating, bad colleagues, etc. It's nice reading stuff which you can think about and say "hey, i've been there". You know?

4:42 PM  
Blogger Bubblemunche said...

Simple: different blogs appeal to a different audience, and the more 'sensational' your blogs are, the higher the viewership it'll get. Just like why S'poreans love reading TNP, and Ang Mos their National Enquirer. If some attractive weirdo decides to post his/her nude pics, you can be sure as hell the 'ratings' will fly through the roof, even if they're writing gibberish (or better still, no words!)

I'll be the first to admit I love Xiaxue's blog. It's totally irrelevant, and I dig slapstick (for goodness' sake I'm a hardcore Stephen Chow fan). People can call me shallow for all I care, but if I really want a perfect piece of grammatically correct essay, I'll do better sticking to a GP ten-year series, which I wouldn't because that's boring.

7:54 PM  
Blogger Melissa said...

you know, people appreciate less intellectual sexblogs more because they're like a chamber of comic relief from the mental activities of everyday life. They have it at work, they had it at school. Enough. People want to laugh. Perhaps many are just too lazy to think.

Grammar wrong? that's even better! It somewhat make these blogs seem more natural or down to earth or something.

xiaxue is just a novelty who lives in the make believe world of virtual reality. People who are not fans go back maybe because they want to see like "what's next" sorta thing and not because they actually enjoy reading her blog. I pity her, the entries are becoming empty and meaningless, perhaps only there merely for the sick of entertaining and have cease to be a true reflection of her life.

i dont know if you see this, but i think as confident as she may appear to be, she is actually feeding her hollow emptiness with the attention and love the public has for her.

oh anyways, thanks for your consistent, honest yet gentle comments on my blog.

11:47 PM  
Blogger calm one said...

Mr Miyagi: I'll be looking forward to your new genre of posts. Make sure they are authentic though =)

FF: Agreed. But I think they should be well-crafted too, otherwise they can get quite tiring.

Bubblemunche: Grammar is really not an issue for me (I guess I wasn't clear in my post), as long as I can understand the work without extreme effort. Although I love the English language, I also understand that language is alive and in flux, and I dun mind using Singlish when I wan. But, talking about, say, the past 5 posts, I think I've enjoyed your blog more than hers.

Melissa: Good thoughts there. But I'm one of those who loves to think, and I think laughter and thinking are not mutually exclusive. I have to remind myself though that not everyone is a philosopher. Also, I don't want to speculate too much about xiaxue (I think it's not necessary nor nice), but sometimes I get a little worried for her - I think a lot of jealous people are hoping/waiting to see her fail. But I think she's smart and I respect her alot.

But I guess it would do all of us bloggers some good if we stand back every now and then and ask ourselves why we blog.

12:29 AM  
Blogger Xiaxue said...

Hi there,

I've been getting comments about the "quality" of recent posts as well. Well, it's a matter of taste, I guess. I personally thought they were funny. *shrugs* I've been getting far more compliments recently as well. Different target audience?

I cannot be serious all the time, simply because I do not have issues to rant about everyday (highly relevant with the fact that I am staying at home mostly, sigh).

As for the sex part - well, my blog has always been sexual, it's not a new thing. Unlike jamiedays (same author as dickchan but female - and phony - but far more popular) of course, I do not use it to attract horny men, but for the seek of poking fun at sex.

Meanwhile ... I've been feeling upset recently (some personal problems, sigh again), and that's why I blog these "silly" and "inane" articles. I do not want to be reminded of my life right now.

Anyway, thanks for your support and comments, and nice blog you have here! =D

p/s: I am ashamed to say I read with relish. Bad, bad me. I'm a mindless majority, sigh (3rd time)

2:08 AM  
Blogger Bubblemunche said...

And the protagonist speaks :)

9:01 AM  
Blogger calm one said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

10:09 AM  
Blogger calm one said...

And thus the antagonist has to respond =)

Thanks for your comment; I wasn't expecting you to do so, but I was actually toying with the thought of asking a response from you and seeing your perspective. No need for that now =)

Yup I agree it's a matter of taste/target audience. That's why I added qualifications in my post ("by our tastes", "for my liking", etc.). But we can't please everyone, and if you try to please everyone, you may end up pleasing no one, not even yourself.

I'm aware of the usual sexual content of your blog, thus my "seems to have a tad more" qualification. It's just my subjective perception which could be mistaken.

But it's your blog. If you can still be yourself even with the fame and what comes with it, kudos to you. I suppose you're under a certain pressure, being labelled the top sg blogger and all.

Hope you get over whatever you're facing soon.

p.s. I deleted my own comment cos I accidentally published it before I was done.

p.p.s. Maybe we should get Mr Brown for his view?

10:13 AM  
Blogger limegreenspyda said...

wat? you get the 'little' boy' comments from canteen aunties too? yeah... i get those all the time. and it proves to be less trouble just playing along with their fantasies of you still being in secondary school or something.

and about blog-hits, i've learnt recently that too much vanity is not a good thing, especially NOT when one's mom is highly tech-savvy and has too much time on her hands for her own good. i'd been bitching about her (for a good reason) cuz a blog is SUCH a good place for near-anonymous catharsis right? wrong. i paid for it dearly. now my blog has to have a password to gain entry, and i guess blog-hits, to me now, would be an issue of the past.

anyways, if you ever want to visit, the password is: protect the rabbits

1:16 PM  
Blogger Bubblemunche said...

I look way too young for my age, so I guess that makes 3 of us :P Damn, I was even stopped at the casino when I was 24!

Haha, do read about Spyda's exploits as a sex hotel operator, keke ;)....

2:09 PM  
Blogger mb said...

Starblog? Please don't call it that. I get enough pressure from work as it is, heheh, and I don't need the fame or the pressures of it (unless it comes with a free car or some kind of neat gadget, and is delivered by a Fiona Xie in a bikini... mmmm, Fiona Xie in a bikini).

Thank you for continuing to read my site despite feeling that the great posts are fewer. Yes, having a family and a fulltime job does take up a significant portion of my idle mind. It may also be that as I get older (I have been at this for some years now), the things that interest me now are different.

Or I may have lost my edge, OMG! I have lost it!!!!! Lost it!!!! I will now quit my job, and leave for the great literary city of London to find myself.

But first, I have to work to save the money to ensure that the family is taken care of, plus my air ticket and expenses, plus the HDB mortgage. Then I can go and find myself.

2:54 PM  
Blogger calm one said...

limegreenspyda: Make sure your mum enables javascript on her browser, otherwise it'll just sail right thru to your blog without needing any password.
And which is that incriminating post? Can't seem to find it...

mb: I'll stop calling it a starblog as soon as it becomes a sexblog =)
But yeah, priorities change with time. I suppose blogging for you comes after wife and kids. And halo2 =)

p.s. Wasn't expecting Xiaxue nor mb to comment. The blogospher works in strange ways...

4:20 PM  
Blogger Spirit Fingers said...

It's all about the sex blogs and extreme political blogs. Cute animals tend to get traffic too.

11:28 AM  
Blogger sari said...

I first heard about XiaXue's blog from a friend, cus my former blog ended up in sammyboy's forum and a friend mentioned bout XX's blog.. so I went to take a peep and Im hooked. No matter hows the content or whats the content.. I always check it~ HeeHee .. and from there, I found Bubble, Zenith and some other blogs that I just love to read!! Hooray! Blogs with sexual contents are bonus for me.. even better if there is pictures! Okay, just kidding.. hahaha I dont mind reading sexual stuff, but I just dun like it when the blogder go into tacit details bout the positions and give me funny ideas! You get what Im saying yeh.. and blogs with grammer mistakes.. oh dats classic~ Heee I dont like to double check what I just typed. I just like to type and type and then click on publish =) ta da!

3:36 AM  
Blogger Zen|th said...

Hmm.. For me I still find Xiaxue's entries interesting. I think it's all down to personal preference.

I don't mind if the blog has sexual content just as long as it doesn't go into explicit detail about certain things. Beyond that, it gets gross for me.

3:50 AM  
Blogger calm one said...

Spirit Fingers: Cute animals get traffic? Not from me =)

micheLLe: What I like about Xiaxue's sexual content is that it's done in humour, poking fun at taboo stuff, and inducing shock in the more conservative reader. And don't worry about grammar - I'm pretty hard on myself, but easy on others =)

Zen|th: Yeah it's a lot about personal preference. You may find explicit sex gross, someone else may find it compelling. So I guess a "good" blog is really subjective many times.

11:55 PM  
Blogger fruitsyrup said...

Personally, i dig something that is close to the heart, a tad silly to expect from bloggers because most blogs are public, the extent of the "close to the heart" articles are compromised but it's the things they say about their inner turmoils, their family, their friends even their pets that make me feel like i really know them and eventually leave me smiling, dreaming, crying :)

6:53 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"My blog has been around longer than his, has more posts, and I would argue, a little more "intelligent" posts, but I'm only getting a fraction of his pageviews!"

Better quality than quantity :-) Continue writing for yourself! You remain your own best reader / fan. And I can most certainly vouch for quality blogs that DO attract high readership.


11:51 PM  
Blogger calm one said...

Dollie: I'm actually quite a private person, so not using my real name in my blog gives me the option of putting stuff that is close to my heart here when I need to...

xena: I can't agree more that quality is certainly better and more important. But if one is concerned about readership, then a certain amount of quantity is needed too I guess. Thanks for the encouragement =)

12:38 AM  
Blogger Agagooga said...

Jamie's Adventures is hilarious. Heh.

Sex sells lah. So does offending people (though they decry it while reading it)

GP 10 year series are on the market? :0

"anyways, if you ever want to visit, the password is: protect the rabbits"
Hope your mother doesn't see that :0

2:57 PM  
Blogger Daryl said...

Since hits/page views are not always correlated with influence, and neither are alternate measures like PageRank, the question of how to measure influence of blogs has been around for quite a bit... How Can We Measure the Influence of the Blogosphere? (PDF file) was Kathy Gill's paper on that very question with respect to American political blogs.

4:06 PM  
Blogger calm one said...

Thanks for the article - it looks interesting. I'll read it as soon as I have the time.

7:12 PM  
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