Given that all of us here at Jewlicious are rock-star type celebrities of the blogging persuasion.
But the Huffington Post, which went live today, features contributions from actual celebrities–you know, the kinds of celebs with fan sites, on-the-street recognizability, and actual income: John Cusack (writing about Hunter S. Thompson), a couples column by Brad Hall and Julia Louis-Dreyfus, and a post by Ellen DeGeneres about horse slaughtering.
In general, the "celebrity-helmed" columns/posts do not allow for comments. The only place I see for commenting is on some of the newsbriefs, wherein two paragraphs of the story are given, along with a link to the article in another publication. For instance, I just commented on a newsbrief about the NY Times finally considering how they can make their paper more user-friendly: they’re considering adding a blog. If you click on “Read Story” it takes you to the whole article in Editor and Publisher. They do have a trackback system, but (and I may be wrong since I’ve not spent tons of time on their site this morning) it seems to only function for the commentable articles.
I’m not sure who’s making the decisions about which news feeds land on the home page at what time, but currently, the home page of the Huffington Post sports these headlines (among others):
Israel Rapped for Human Guinea Pigs
US Spy Pollard Claims Torture in Prison
(Since there’s also a “Google Book Project Angers France” headline, maybe it’s a little more balanced than I’m presenting here.)
Well, the site looks good in general, and provides newsbriefs from many industries and areas of interest. And it’s always interesting to see what happens when celebrities start blogging. But I’d argue that without the commenting function enabled, the celebs are not so much blogging as writing mini-(in some cases, micro-) columns. The beauty of blog is dialogue; and without the conversation, it might as well be an electronic newspaper.
Let the Trackbacking begin.
(Another version of this post appeared on My Urban Kvetch.)