Boring Precursor to the review: When I came into the blogging world, most of the blogs I followed were MBA applicants blogs. This is a category of blogs where, applicants discuss their GMAT, essay writing interview and admission trend experience. Blogs provided a great source of information apart from providing a personal first-person perspective on the application process. At a time when I thought there were no Indian blogs, I came across two bloggers and I started sporadically following them. I constantly saw these 2 names while bloghopping, they were Kiruba and Lazy Geek (Guru). These 2 bloggers were kind of early starters to the blogging concept and had a huge readership base. The blogging world has changed considerably since they started. Blogs are being written by diverse set of people from ones who actually work on movie to journalists to younger, hip'er people. I have some thoughts on whether these behemoths have handled this change. A blog, as I see it in the desi blogosphere, is a source of entertainment. It is voyuerism. If it is informative its a bonus. In the future this definition may change but as it stands now, this is my view. It is also a cliche that these 2 bloggers have the right to write whatever they want. Its their blog. But like a movie review, this review of their blog is also for entertainment. In general I like essayists. People who write like R.K.N or Ramesh Mahadevan. In general I look for quality of English prose more than content and some original thinking. I like a well-written post about nothing than a poorly written super-analysis. And that is the perspective I use, when I choose blogs to read. Also these 2 reviews is complete conjecture and I extensively second guess the bloggers. I stereo type, unfairly criticize, show partiality and in general behave like an assole.
Well! I never read much of him anyway. I came across a mention of Kiruba in Instapundit in the context of a blogger quitting due to fatigue. It later turned out Kiruba was doing an April fool's joke. I was disgusted with that stunt and lost whatever little respect, I had for him. I agree mostly, with the criticism leveled against him. He mainly tries for the fast-food entertainment, throwing out quick small posts, which are, as it is now cliche, forwarded emails or nothing-news about his blog-related speeches. I don't think intra-company blogs are useful in the IT services sector. I have been there done that. But that's a different topic. Yes! even I can't fathom who would listen to these blog speeches by him. It defeats the whole point of the blog. If you need to invite someone to talk about something, I don't understand why he has a blog going. I guess he mainly survives as a result of a upper-management forcing engineers or middle managers to go and listen to this speech because they think 'blog' is a fad. I would not be surprised if he cashes in on the loophole caused by lack of 'real' knowledge, typically exhibited by the upper management in IT services sector and becomes an Indian Blog Guru. But that is not the point. He has the right to survive and he is doing it.
My main problem with him was lack of originality. He has never had an original opinion to offer. At least I haven't read one of that kind. But the more recent goof up by him shows a much deeper malaise than absent-minded ness. Yes! Everybody makes mistakes - that's okay. At the risk of making a sweeping generalization based on reading him for the last 2 years, the mistakes showed that beyond being un-original he is also impersonal. In that there is no passion for him to write blogs. He is like a newspaper editor, who does this - not for pleasure - but as a process, as a routine, as work, as a chore - possibly just to promote himself in the corporate world and keep a machine running. It shows a level of detachment where he publishes a story to account for a day's post than actually sitting and thinking about it. I do not like such blogs, like the way I do not like TOI. If the western media and domestic people form opinion about Indian blogs based on his blog, it is bad. It is like Western audience forming opinions about Indian movies based on 'Devadas' and 'Paheli'.
I do not think he is doing a mistake, a crime or is deluding people. It is India's inalienable right of being host to the world's largest stupid population that results in glorifying certain people as "India's #1 blogger". I have never understood people's motivation in calling someone a "king" etc. Especially Kiruba. It happens in movies and politics. It is so demeaning and insulting. But we do it as a country. You can't blame Kiruba for being born in a stupid country. It is what it is and he is what he is. If we have unfair expectation on him based on our own lack of knowledge about him - it is our problem not his. It is the same stupidity that results in many readers assuming that Kiruba criticism's have some sort of vendetta against him. I do not know what I will be attributed with - jealousy perhaps. It is the problem of some of the audience not being mature enough to treat a disagreement as just that instead of a deeper personal connotation. But unfortunately being part of a public domain, subjects you to unfair criticism and reviews, as much as it gets you "king" kind of accolades. This is, in a way, what this post is. It is the 'if you can write about anything, I can write about you' argument.
Out of these 2 bloggers Lazy is my favorite by a big margin. What is his space? I think he mainly writes about movies, and literature. He does not write a lot outside his space and I frankly like his stuff in the moviespace only. He is a big fan of Sujata and literally dotes Sujata. He articulates an average movie goers thoughts very well. I assume people who visit him are looking for general time-pass, movie tidbits etc. I also think he has been blogging since 2001/2002 period. While his readership has risen along with the growth in popularity of blogs, he seems to have off-late run out of gas. For the last 1 year at least, he has certainly been showing signs of fatigue and writers block. He has publicly been debating about the use of blogging and his thoughts on continuing his blog. After a small break he came back. I personally found his posts post-break completely jaded and lacked his usual enthusiasm. The downward spiral in which the Lazy Geek space ship was plummeting seemed to have strayed into the maanga's puke zone. Not that maanga is a QA or that sigma indicator but it does give some sort of a controversy analysis data point. I have read every post of Lazy in the last 2 years. He offers a lot of original opinions. But he has become 'politically correct' which blunts the personal'ness or gutsy'ness of a blog. I find that a bit of a dampener. I think he has to forget his readership volume and piss off a few people and be an assole in general. That will get some adrenalin running.
Lazy is on a another extended sabbatical now. Probably recharging his batteries? Who knows. I assume too much. That's my specialty. But I think - fatigue, as a result of a gzillion blog posts has what made lazy spiral to standards, he is unfamiliar with. He has a reasonably logical thought process. I miss reading him in the morning and I hope he returns after taking the well-earned break.