Peter Merholz is back after some month of abstinence. He needed a timeout from blogging:
I was also growing increasingly frustrated with the echo chamber effect of weblogs. A meme drifts out there, and then 38 different people post their take on that meme, and they all link to each other, and, as a reader, you bounce from post to post, the semantic feedback growing until it’s deafening.
Well pointed. I don’t read this as a general argument against weblogging (Peter decided to turn back to it anyway). He is describing a very common state of blogging where people in fact do interact with each other very often, but not very direct and thus superficial. My expectation of the close future of weblogs is that -as it always has been- people get creative about it and develop ways to enrich the experience. Trackback (video demo, Quicktime, 9MB) is just an example for a technical way to generate more density in the structure. There will be more to come.
As I said the other day: weblogs are just one technique that has to be combined with others. Whenever critics take weblogs out of this context they are looking at a slice of the story.