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Online Marketplace of Ideas, Part 2

Lots of cog floating about my cranium about the online marketplace of ideas, so this may take a few posts...

The blogosphere is obviously thriving -- you wouldn't be reading this obscure blog if it weren't. Bloglines says it indexes more than 257 million articles. Technorati watches more than 6.2 million blogs.

I was a college student when the Internet started to take off. There was buzz around the English department (I double majored in English and Journalism -- how's that for overkill?) about this new form of writing -- hypertext -- where the rules of communicating were supposed to be different. The hype coming from Silicon Valley was that everyone could be a publisher. I believed the hype and learned HTML and how to use WS_FTP. It helped me get a few jobs, but I never published my own website. Not that I couldn't have done it. It's just that no one would have cared.

Now thanks to blogging, my knowledge of HTML is useful but not necessarily essential. And FTP? What a pain. Blogs certainly make it easier to publish online. Does that make them revolutionary? No. But here's what does: The blogosphere is becoming the online marketplace of ideas because of the currency it gives to bloggers... (drum roll, please) Links.

(Can I hear a "yougottabekiddinme"?)

Linking is what gives bloggers their power. More to come.

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