25 Feb 2011

Outdated goals for outdated people

Insecure people online or off will sometimes try to intimidate me with comments to the effect that I'd be more 'believable', 'likeable', 'respected' or some other condescending adjective if only I could get my views on the Etruscan language or those of Proto-Indo-European published in journals or books instead of wasting my time with this silly blogging thing. Usually they're just unaccomplished themselves and are projecting their life-failures onto me but the intended implication is that my lack of published journal articles is an unforgivable mark against me. It's also implied that online publishing is secondhand publishing while the worthy people are publishing physical books with paper pages and ink, just as they did in the Middle Ages. If only I could learn to be more retro and quill my way to fame like the elite pulp polluters of society.

Yet if traditional publishing had higher standards of quality, tonnes of printed gobbledeegook, everything from Zecharia Sitchin's painfully serious The 12th Planet to the intoxicated self-contradictions of the King James Bible, would never reach print. (Oops, did I just go there? Lol.) The obvious lesson here is that traditional publishing has no higher standards than online publishing. To pit one communication medium against another like this is a specious excuse for certain readers to be dismissive and mentally lazy.

A related credentialist belief is that if you don't get peer-reviewed by certain academic cabals, you have no right to express an educated opinion regardless of its logical validity. These people sadly believe that only those with a boastful curriculum vitae have the authority to think and question things. Well, I've been blog-writing long enough to recognize where the future is headed, who I'm writing for and what misplaced hostility sounds like. These online predators must not have gotten the memo.

So here's the memo: Are we near the end of the journal? by Nat Lang.


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