The BlogFather

dedicated to the art & heart of blogging

Do You See Them Yet?

Posted by frankahilario on f April 2007

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‘Can You Find It?’ by Frank A Hilario

Google Blog Search Beats Technorati 3-0!

Being an inveterate blogger, each time I post a message in any of my blogs, and I have quite a few, invariably in an hour or two, I check with both Technorati and Google Blog Search (GBS) to see which one catches my new blogpost. What’s the use blogging if nobody finds me? My past experience is that sometimes Technorati gets it first, not GBS; at other times, GBS gets it first, not Technorati.

My shot is that of a busy street corner right next to a Mercury Drugstore and right next to a police station. Do you see the two motorcycles cutting across that narrow pedestrian lane? They have been there for at least 2 days, and they are about 3 meters away from the police station. What’s the matter: The policemen can’t see?

Let’s see if the blog search engines can see better. I’m going to compare those right now using precise texts in blogs here on The BlogFather.

Search for the title of a blog I posted 02 April:
Search includes double quotes: “instinct & consciousness”
GBS got it; Technorati did not!

Search for the title of a blog I posted 03 April:
Search includes double quotes: “some other blogfathers”
GBS got it; Technorati did not!

Search for the title of a blog I posted 04 April:
Search includes double quotes: “the bloghead”
GBS got it; Technorati got many a “bloghead” page but did not get mine!

What can I say? GBS is better, better, better!
In the search for blogs, Technorati is nowhere to be found.
I tried it after the two; Yahoo Search doesn’t look good either.

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Posted in advanced blog searches, blog searches, Yahoo Searches | Leave a Comment »

Bloggers & The Bourgeoisie

Posted by frankahilario on f April 2007

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‘Relevances’ by Frank A Hilario

Relevance & Irrelevance

Victor Villanueva (Bikoy.Net) is complaining:

My attendance in (The 1st Philippine Blog Awards) simply reinforced what I believe the situation of the ‘blogosphere’ is. Almost all bloggers in the Philippines today are still middle class and upper class urban Filipinos, most of whom are in Manila. And (because of the fact) that the Philippines is a largely rural country, and a vast majority of Filipinos are still without internet access, I honestly believe that this so-called ‘Philippine blogosphere’ (and this may run in contrast to how other present Filipino bloggers perceive things), is barely Philippine or Filipino at all.

Oh, Bikoy, if you’re telling me that because I prefer to blog in English and because I’m middle class and because my American Idol is an American President, that I’m ‘barely Filipino’ and my topic is ‘barely Philippine’ – then the poor who can’t blog are ‘fully Filipino’ and whatever they talk about is ‘fully Philippine.’ Do you know what the poor talk about? Erap with love, GMA with hate. ‘Ang daming ignoranteng kongresista,’ I heard Leo Martinez say on TV, ‘kasi ang daming ignoranteng botante.’ We have so many ignorant lawmakers because we have so many ignorant voters. That’s the majority of Filipinos – else, the old fools have no chances of winning. They have made a President, didn’t they?

About Internet access, go to the villages and in sleepy towns like my own Asingan in Pangasinan, and you will see they do have Internet cafés (our town had 5 when I last counted last year). The problem with the urban and rural youth is that while they have Internet access, they gravitate towards online games, that’s all. And do you know that in the University Town of Los Baños, there are about 50 Internet cafés all thriving on online games for the youth, and these cafés are very near schools (including UP Los Baños) and neither school officials nor local government officials have spoken against them – or thrown them to jail? There’s a law about schools and students playing games while classes are going on. All over the country, in these beautiful pearls of the Orient seas, the Internet cafés are making money on the future of our children and nobody’s complaining or doing something about it.

What thought preoccupies many Filipinos these days, according to SWS and Pulse Asia and the Genuine Opposition? Only one: ‘Oust GMA.’ That, my dear Bikoy, is barely Philippine or Filipino at all; in fact, it is anti-Filipino.

With our pride and energy as bloggers, should also come the humility of realizing that ‘we’ bloggers are not that much relevant. NOT YET, at least. I don’t even think the Internet will play much of a role in the upcoming local and national elections without our dependence on mainstream media. This passion and hobby of ours is still a very ‘burgis’ preoccupation, really. But this should not stop us from pursuing greater relevance and inclusive reach.

If you measure ‘relevance’ as ‘clout’ (as in the power of the media), then we bloggers are hardly relevant. But I see relevance otherwise. I see relevance in talking (and being happy) about being a housewife, traveling, There is relevance in going to church, in selling candles to earn a living, in going to dinner with a concert. There is relevance in just being ourselves.

If by relevance you mean fighting for the poor and the oppressed, I have other ideas. You don’t fight for others – they have to fight for themselves. They have to help themselves: Let’s stop teaching our people to be forever mendicants. You teach them, if you can, how to fight – which you can blog about. Give a man a fish, and he’ll have food for a day; teach a man how to fish, and he’ll have food for a lifetime. Unless he’s lazy.

Me, for instance, I’ve been blogging about and advocating a parliamentary system for these islands. If you don’t believe in a parliamentary system for the Philippines, would you say I am irrelevant? If I am against genetically modified organisms, would you say I am relevant?

So what if I’m bourgeois and a blogger? We have barely scratched the surface of the power of the Internet. We are the vanguards; there must always be vanguards. Look at your world history: Only the bourgeois can be vanguards. The masses cannot be vanguards – or they will not be the masses.

For now, I still dream (of) a more dynamic and representative blogosphere that showcases in as much as it exposes the common Filipino’s life and the real Philippine situation. And for the mean time, present bloggers like me, and you who’s reading this now, should continue blogging, reading blogs, aspire for better things to come, and do something (aside from blogging) about the things around us.

What is the real Philippine situation: That we are poor, that we are corrupt, that we cheat in elections, that the Americans stole our independence, that Emilio Aguinaldo ordered the execution of Andres Bonifacio? Everybody knows that already. (And who, may I ask, rhetorically, is the biggest election cheat in the world? Not a Filipino.) If I may add to the description of the real Philippine situation: We have cultivated a nation of mendicants. The attitude of the masses now can be summarized in two words: Give me.

Give me land. Give me a house,
Give me a job. Give me more than a job,
Give me medicine.
Give me my human rights.
Give me power.
Give me more!
Give me hope.

At that, I now invoke an American President, John F Kennedy, who said:

Ask not what your country can do for you; rather, ask what you can do for your country.

That to me, my dear Bikoy, is being relevant – and fully Filipino.

Posted in bloggers, blogging, bourgeoisie, Filipino bloggers, Internet access, irrelevance, online games, Philippine bloggers, relevance | Leave a Comment »

Writing Without Tears

Posted by frankahilario on f April 2007

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‘How I Shot Myself On The Foot’ by Frank A Hilario

‘Tis Better To Have Blogged And Lost

Than Never To Have Blogged At All!

She is a blogger blogged. 05 April 2007: Mae Lynn L Paulino, you who are engaged to Johnny Depp and who had a fling with Hugh Jackman, I’m reading your 29 March blog about ‘The Stress That PBA Brought’, referring to the The 1st Philippine Blog Awards. I can hear your heart break, you who are ‘so fed up in reading how undeserving’ you are being nominated as one of the finalists in the Personal Blog category. Shari Cruz as Misteryosa won and you lost; if you ask me, it’s okay; in being nominated, you were a winner already. You can’t win them all.

You say of your very own The Last Leaf Designs and Chronicles: ‘This site is full of crappy and stupid posts which (are) important to me, which (enable) me to take out the stress, sadness, loneliness, anger or whatever negative feeling I have.’ Precisely! Crappy and stupid my posts may be, I blog what is important to me. Another way of putting that is this: I blog, therefore I am. Blogging is personal above everything else. That’s the first reason for blogging. That’s why I believe blogging is the best thing that ever happened to writing – it became really personal, and almost no holds barred. You can show your best foot forward, or you can hide it. Me, I simply borrow my daughter’s Sony DSC-S60 Cybershot, shoot myself on the foot, and brag about it.

My grammar & spelling are now impersonally taken care of – I just have to remember to use a word processor like Microsoft Word, or Google Docs. And since publishing a blog is almost no sweat, and no censor or reviewer can stop the process, I believe blogging is the best thing that ever happened to publishing. You become your own best, or worst, critic. I, Writer have become my own publisher – that is the miracle that blogging wrought. You of little faith! Why do you look for a miracle outside of your own blogging?

Posted in 'I blog therefore I am', 1st Philippine Blog Awards, being a finalist, being blogged over, being nominated, blogging, Misteryosa, personal blog | 1 Comment »

The Wizard of US

Posted by frankahilario on f April 2007

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Logo of the 1st Philippine Blog Awards (2007)

A Study Of Fr Stephen’s

‘A Blogger’s Prayer’

At the The 1st Philippine Blog Awards night at the CPR Auditorium on the 4th floor of the RCBC Plaza at Ayala Country in the City of Makati last Saturday (31 March 2007), with ‘A Blogger’s Prayer,’ Fr Stephen Cuyos, you made me laugh on the outside, you made me cry in the inside.

A Blogger’s Prayer

So compassionate, so faithful, so loving You are Our Father.

We ask You to increase our faith and our love for You that we may use blogging as an instrument to fulfill Your purposes. May we become bloggers of truth and promoters of peace.

Help us to be steadfast in our Christian commitment that visitors may find in our blogs a source of encouragement and inspiration. Give us strength to proclaim Your word, that we may play our part in breaking down the walls of hostility in the world and use our blogs to strengthen the bonds of friendship, solidarity and love.

Make our hearts meek and humble
that we may treat our readers as friends, not as unique hits,
that we may strive to change ourselves for the better more often than we pimp our site templates,
that we may find more time to ease the pain of someone in our own home than to reply to comments left by strangers,
that we may interact with our next-door neighbors as often as we chat with our blogrolled friends,
that we may be more concerned about helping the less privileged than about the number of subscribers to our RSS feeds.

Deliver us, Father, from spams and viruses, from pride and selfishness, and from the temptation to replicate images without permission and copy ideas without crediting the original authors.

May we always be united as a network of bloggers and friends working together in Your name. May our blogs lead us closer to You.

We ask all these through Christ, Our Lord. Amen.

To the reader, I have just made a little study of that Little Big Prayer, so let me tell you what I found:

Language. I hardly noticed it that night, but now I have: The prayer is in English and we are in the Philippines. I love it! You can be an ultra-nationalist, or ultra-conservative, or ultra-naïve like the Ilocano that I was (now I’m only naïve and Ilocano), you don’t have to know HTML but you can’t blog if you don’t (or your Girl Friday doesn’t) know English.

English is the richest language in the world, bar none; ergo, it is unwise, may uneducated, for us to ignore it in favor of our own when we know that our own is inadequate for international intellectual exchanges. The medium is the message. The medium is English; the message is English. The battlefront today is IT, and if you don’t master your English, you’re OUT.

I’ve been married to a Tagala from Nueva Ecija for the last 40 years but I have never been in favor of Tagalog as the only basis for the national language; now that I realize the Cory Constitution of 1987 effectively outlawed Tagalog as that unique, prejudicial basis of a national language, 20 years later I can exult. Better late than never!

Counting words twice. Once: ‘A Blogger’s Prayer’ is exactly 265 words, including the title, which is from Fr Stephen himself. To count the number of words, I Entered before every word in the prayer and then numbered the list: 265. Twice: I thought of sorting the list and, serendipity! I found Fr Stephen’s secret agenda. Note:

The word our is the most repeated in this short prayer, 17 times in all. Here they all are; read and be encouraged:
Our Father
our faith and our love for You
our Christian commitment
our blogs a source of encouragement and inspiration
our part in breaking down the walls of hostility in the world
our blogs to strengthen the bonds of friendship, solidarity and love
our hearts meek and humble
our readers as friends, not as unique hits
ourselves for the better
our site templates
our own home
our next-door neighbors
our blogrolled friends
our RSS feeds
our blogs lead us closer to you
Our Lord.

The word we ranks next in number, 13 in all; read and be instructed:
We ask You to increase our faith
we may use blogging as an instrument to fulfill Your purposes
we become bloggers of truth
we may play our part
we may treat our readers as friends
we may strive to change ourselves
we pimp our site templates
we may find more time to ease the pain of someone
we may interact
we chat
we may be more concerned about helping the less privileged
we (may) be always united as a network of bloggers
We ask all these.

And there are 4 instances of us; read and be moved:
Help us to be steadfast
Give us strength to proclaim Your word
Deliver us, Father, from spams and viruses
lead us closer to You.

There are other words repeated, such as You & Your (7), more (4), friends & friendship (4), love & loving (3), often (2), Father (2), faith & faithful (2), Christ & Christian (2). But none of these has the impact of our, our, ourselves; we, we, we; us, us, us! All these numbers tell me that the hidden agenda of ‘A Blogger’s Prayer’ can be stated in 2 letters: US. Not I, not you, not him, not her, not them. US. Here are other words in the prayer that suggest that message: blogrolled, bonds, friends, love, neighbors, network, peace, united, solidarity, together. US. Therefore, I say, no one else has been hiding in the Emerald City but a certain Fr Stephen Cuyos MSC who is none other than The Wizard of US.

Posted in 'A Blogger's Pledge', 'A Blogger's Prayer', 'The Wizard of US', 1st Philippine Blog Awards, 31 March 2007, blogging, Fr Stephen Cuyos, RSS feeds, templates | 2 Comments »

Google Doesn’t Know?

Posted by frankahilario on f April 2007

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Google in Filipino (screen capture)

google.com.ph 20 Years Behind The Times

Annoyance is what I feel whenever I’m googling outside of home – and therefore am not using my new beautiful Google Homepage – because I always get Google Pilipinas first: Mga Larawan, Mga Grupo, Hanapin sa Google, Sinusuwerte Ako, ang web, mga pahina mula sa Pilipinas etc. I need one additional mouse click before I can reach my Google Homepage, where I have all my shortcuts to webpages and more. But that’s not what irks me. The knowledge I’m after is English, is technical, is untranslatable to any of 100 Philippine languages, and Google insists that I use Tagalog in my search? I thought Google was more intelligent than that!

Why does Google always assume that when I want Google Philippines I prefer the Tagalog language? Why is Tagalog the default idiom? So what if I’m a Filipino and I’m located in the Philippines? It must be that Google doesn’t know that Tagalog as the basis of the national language (now called Filipino) was effectively outlawed by the Cory Constitution in 1987, or 20 years ago. Article XIV, Section 6 states:

The national language of the Philippines is Filipino. As it evolves, it shall be further developed and enriched on the basis of existing Philippine and other languages.

It must be that Google Philippines is chained to the historic past, not out in the present discovering possible futures. Why does the almighty Google cling to a minion of Imperial Manila? I don’t understand at all. Unless someone can give me a satisfactory explanation, I am inclined to believe that Google doesn’t want my country to capitalize on one of its strengths, which is its mastery of the English language. Et tu, Google!

English is the universal language, and we Filipinos are very good at it, among them those who ride the waves of the Internet – but Google insists that we Filipinos deny, ignore or gloss over this fact. Not very intelligent, is it? I salute Yahoo because its Philippine presence doesn’t presume to know better, because its attitude is not patronizing. How can we compete with the IT universe using Tagalog / Filipino as language? We can, but it will take us a hundred years. With English, we can compete now with the rest of the world, we can challenge now the best in the world, especially in knowledge management. Why, is Google afraid that with Google Philippines in English, it is sleeping with the enemy? A narrow view, I must say.

Posted in Filipino language, Google Homepage, Google Philippines, language of the Internet, patronizing attitude, Tagalog language, Yahoo Philippines | 5 Comments »

The BlogHead

Posted by frankahilario on f April 2007

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‘The Bloghead’ by Frank A Hilario

Just Blogging

I call my blogsite The BlogFather, but I am not him; neither am I The Blogfather. You can call me instead The BlogHead. As in blockhead. (See also Jughead, as in Archie Comics.)

Look at the image; now, which head is mine: the one with the red hat or the one with the handkerchief over his face, with only the eyes showing? Neither. I am the one taking the photograph, remember? I have nothing to hide. I work mostly with computers, sometimes with the camera, that’s what I do; I write, edit, desktop, blog, shoot, upload.

Right now, I’m calling myself The BlogHead for several reasons:

(1) Just looking. I’m looking for The Blogfather, the ideal one. When you go look for an ideal, you are bound to fail. So why look for an ideal at all? I don’t mind failing; you can say Failing is my middle name. If you don’t go look for the ideal, you’re pathetic.

(2) Just blogging. So you don’t mistake me as proclaiming that I am The BlogFather / The Blogfather. That’s an overwhelming responsibility. I just want to blog.

(3) Just inventing. I have so far invented these:
A Blogger’s Pledge (Blogging Rights)
Blogal Village, Blogal Village Voice (The Blogal Village Voice)
blogeasy, bloghard (The World According To Worp)
bloghead
(right here, right now)
blogical (see ‘The Power Of The Press’ on this webpage)
The Ten Commandments Of Blog (The American Frank), which is an amendment of my very own earlier proclamation
The Ten Commandments Of Blogging (Blogging Rights).

(4) Just feeling free. I have declared unilaterally that the 5th freedom is the freedom of blog, which you can read about if you jump in here: (Creative Leaps).

(5) Just enjoying. I have in this corner defined blogging upon my own advice (see ‘The Power Of The Press’). Only a bloghead would do that, right? (Incidentally: Upon my own advice – that’s another way of putting into perspective the power of the blog.)

Posted in 'A Blogger's Pledge', 'Blogal Village', 'The 5th Freedom', 'The Bloghead', 'The Ten Commandments Of Blog', blockhead, blogging, freedom of blog, Jughead | Leave a Comment »

The Power Of The Press

Posted by frankahilario on f April 2007

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‘Blogical’ by Frank A Hilario

A Picture Is Worth A Thousand Words,

Blogging Only Two

Consider now this: Is photography essential to blogging? Let’s see. On my part, I have been an avid photographer since more than 30 years ago. I went out early morning on Valentine’s Day this year on a shooting spree and came up with 200 shots, 3 of them now showing here on The BlogFather. The image I now call ‘Blogical’ was unintentional – I simply liked what I saw, and what came out is what we see through the glass darkly – and lightly. It’s blogical, isn’t it?

With the concept of blogical, I’m trying to capture the source of all our blogging as both from our instinct and our consciousness, borrowing from Carl Jung (1933, Modern Man In Search Of A Soul, San Diego: Harcourt Brace & Co, 244 pages). I want to be able to appreciate what blogging is; now I find that to do that, first I have to attempt to define it.

My invented term blogical comes from the words biological, blog and logical. Applying what I understand of Jung, biological is our nature, which is creative; logical is our consciousness, which is critical – the ideal blog embodies both. The biological part of a blog is based on life, first experience, folk wisdom; the logical part of a blog is the one that is either mathematical, sequential, hierarchical, chronological, linear, scientific – or simply that which seems to most people reasonable to assume.

Because blogging is sensational, heady, breathtaking, we may forget that it is essentially an old freedom, the freedom of expression – except that it is a new form. As I am fond of quoting, Dean Ricardo Pascual of the University of the Philippines has a brilliant definition: ‘Freedom is like this – you are free to swing your arm short of my nose.’ You are free to blog your arm short of my reading glasses.

Because blogging is an individual freedom, it is limited by the freedom of others; because blogging is self-publishing, it is limited only by the faith and reason of the blogger. That is to say, blogging is the ultimate freedom. I don’t mind the bragging, but I mind that I find so much swearing, name-calling, non-sequiturs, argumentum ad hominem, bad-mouthing in blogs, not to mention exhibiting images of bodily parts that do not inspire me at all to do good.

Blogging, if I may define it, is the process by which an author writes and publishes himself electronically. The blogger writes and having writ, moves on. Either he edits his own work or he does not; the thing is that he is able to publish himself all by himself, with no need for peer review and no need to submit to censorship.

I must emphasize: The essence of blogging is contained in two words: writing and publishing – just these two words, no more, no less. Prior to publishing in the world outside, editing is necessary, but in most blogging, editing is more pronounced by its absence than its presence. You will find so many grammatical lapses and spelling errors. Blogspace and presentation templates provided by WordPress and other blog donors are valuable and welcome but are not essential to the definition of blogging; that is to say, I can blog simply using email or mailmerge or even the CD. The images that come with some blogs are beautiful and helpful but also not essential to the definition; I can blog simply with text, as it was in the beginning. Blogging regularly is a good habit but is not necessary in defining blogging. And neither is being able to design my own blogsite for my own blogging. I’m a blogger, not a programmer. The presentation template I chose for this blogsite, which Kyle Neath calls ‘Hemingway,’ is an excellent illustration of my last two points: text and programming. (I chose it also because Ernest Hemingway was one of my favorite writers.) Hemingway the template at first doesn’t show any images, just text. That is essential blogging. When you click on a title, only then do you see the image. That is advanced blogging.

The combination of being able to write and publish oneself is an awe-inspiring power never before held nor beheld by man. I have been writing earnestly for a hundred years (would you believe more than 30?), and submitted perhaps a hundred articles to many a newspaper and magazine in the Philippines, but have been published only once, and that was by accident (Woman’s Home Companion did publish my ‘The Unbelievable Ten Commandments Of Writing’ more than 10 years ago, when a lady saw it in the newsletter I was editing for New Day Publishers, for which I thank the lady; I never knew her name). Of the many emails, I have sent, none have been acknowledged even with an automatic civilized reply like ‘Thank you for your interest in publishing with us.’ So what if I write exceptionally well? That is the breathtaking power of the press to reject – it has taken my breath too many times in all those 30 years. For crying out loud! That is why I have referred to blogging as ‘The Revenge Of The Unpublished Writer’ – see one of my other blogsites: The Word According To Frank. That is why I’m happily blogging; that is why you can find me deliriously blogging on many a subject all over the (virtual) universe. As I empty myself in my blogging, blogging fulfills me.

Posted in 'Hemingway' template, 'The Ultimate Freedom', advanced blogging, blog donors, blogging as publishing, blogging as writing, blogging defined, blogsite, blogspace, CD, consciousness, creative thinking, critical thinking, editing, email, Ernest Hemingway, essential blogging, folk wisdom, images, images in blogging, mailmerge, new form of expression, photographs in blogging, photography, presentation templates, publishing, self-publishing, the power of the press to reject, website, writing | Leave a Comment »

Some Other Blogfathers

Posted by frankahilario on f April 2007

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‘The Blogfather Guitar’ by Frank A Hilario

The Blogfather I’m Looking For

After I registered ‘The BlogFather’ as my newest blogsite and posted one blog (see below), I decided to search the blogsphere (blogosphere sounds awkward to me) using Technorati and Google Blog Search. This is what I found from among the few hundred pages I scanned and looked into:

There is The BlogFather (blogfather.net/) – it’s a free blog service, and that’s all I’m going to say about it.

There’s a funny The BlogFather – go visit (blog.diecast-dude.com/). It’s worth your time.

Tony Pierce (kidicarus222.blogspot.com/) is trying to be The Blogfather by going for the Guinness Book of World Record for the most number of bloggers linked to his site: 2,008. I’ll leave him alone.

Ni Howdy (nihowdy.blogspot.com/) calls Professor Michael Turton ‘Taiwan Blogfather’ because ‘If anyone knows, he (does). He blogs on it all, what volume!’ Okay, but The Blogfather I’m looking for is not only a keeper of knowledge or a counter of blogs.

BabyBlue (babybluecafe.blogspot.com/) argues that Thomas Paine, the Yankee patriot, is ‘the original Blogfather because he was ‘a radical pamphleteer’ (Wikipedia), and that, BB says, is 18th Century English for ‘Blogger,’ as ‘Thomas Paine anticipated and helped foment the American Revolution through his powerful writings, most notably Common Sense, an incendiary pamphlet’ and that BB says equals ‘blog.’ Be that as it may, I’m looking for a Blogfather whose blogs are radical but not incendiary. If blogging is nothing but being inflammatory, God bless blogging! God bless the Internet!

Jane Perrone (blogs.guardian.co.uk/) calls Hossein Derakhshan ‘the father of the Persian blogosphere’ because as he himself writes (hoder.com/), ‘the movement I started in November 2001 has become so mainstream …’ That’s more of quantity blogging. I’m looking for more of quality blogging with a leader who would deserve the title The Blogfather.

EL says (elingo.wordpress.com/) ‘Because of his long-standing prominence in the political blogosphere and his efforts to encourage new bloggers, Glenn Reynolds is ‘sometimes called the BlogFather.’ Yes, but what about encouraging the old bloggers?

Carolyn Barta says (dallasblog.com/) Jerome Armstrong is sometimes called the Blogfather ‘for having mentored other bloggers.’ Henry Gomez says (cubanamericanpundits.blogspot.com/): ‘We call Val (Prieto) the Blogfather because he was really the first Cuban-American blogger and he inspired a proliferation of such blogs that includes this one.’

Yes, we need a Blogfather who mentors, who inspires, and who does more.

Dave Winer (52) has the best claim for being The Blogfather (scripting.com/) because he ‘pioneered the development of weblogs, syndication (RSS), podcasting, outlining, and web content management.’ But he’s not him I’m looking at as The Blogfather. The Blogfather in my mind is more than a pioneer; indeed, he need not be a pioneer.

TUT (uselesstree.typepad.com/) calls Marc Lynch Blogfather and describes him ‘an excellent teacher, an extraordinary writer, and a helpful colleague.’ I like that. I’m looking for a Blogfather like that, and more than that: a creative thinker, one with sky-high standards and ground-level heart, above all one who has a passion for blogging and a heart for family. And he will have to be rich, very rich.

RSSP (rsspieces.com/) refers to Technorati as The Blogfather. That is not my idea of The Blogfather at all. An inanimate object or something cannot be an excellent teacher, an extraordinary writer, and a helpful colleague.

The moment I saw the one I’m now calling ‘The Blogfather Guitar,’ I shot it (14 february 2007); I fell in love with it. I imagine The Blogfather would be so creative he can find music – and blog about it – in a harsh, unlikely window that everyone passes by and ignores. Music cannot come from an unwhole guitar – it can come only from a whole heart.

I haven’t found him yet, so I’ll continue on my quest for The Blogfather for All Seasons. In the meantime, I’m content to be able to invent him in my mind.

Posted in blogosphere, blogsphere, David Winer, Glenn Reynolds, Google Blog Search, Hossein Derkhshan, Jerome Armstrong, Marc Lynch, Michael Turton, Technorati, The Blogfather, The Blogfather For All Seasons, Thomas 'Tom' Paine, Tony Pierce, Val Prieto | Leave a Comment »

The BlogFather

Posted by frankahilario on f April 2007

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‘Instinct & Consciousness’ by Frank A Hilario

Instinct & Consciousness

The BlogFather? As in The Godfather. Because I’m old enough; I will be exactly 67 on 17 September 2007. Because I have always been prolific, overseeing a kingdom of plenty (numbers, not wealth). I have 2x more blogsites than I have children (12): I avoid mixing subjects. Because ‘The BlogFather’ is better than my earlier Compuser Says, an obvious paraphrase of ‘Confucius Says.’ Because I can see that blogging has a lot of growing up to do here and abroad, more so over there, and it can use some inspiration – we need to aspire to greatness. I’m a teacher – I passed the Teacher’s Exam (80.6%); I hope to inspire you to be the greatest bloggers you can be. The Godfather became the greatest movie ever made. Because I believe I’m the first blogger in the world to recognize and proclaim blogging as the 5th freedom, as I wrote on 14 March 2006 in one of my blogs, Creative Leaps. Awesome freedom.

Awesome responsibility. Blogging must be exercised creatively and critically, emphasis on the conjunction – ‘and’ signifying concurrence, combination. Creative and critical, faith and reason, useless each without the other. Thus, if you want to swear, to use bad language in a new idiom, why, that is very creative of you – but consider the neighbor, the listening ear of the other person, the eye of the beholder.

It’s very easy to be negative – you don’t need to be told, you don’t need exercise for it to become a habit. Negative is creative only if you turn it into a positive. The marketing geniuses do that, the copywriters do that for them.

Being negative is like this: During the The 1st Philippine Blog Awards, the invocation was by a Roman Catholic priest, Fr Stephen Cuyos, and B complained (almost) without mincing words about The Good Father’s A Blogger’s Prayer. Instead of saying he was offended because he was not a Catholic, B could have taken it for what it was: an exercise in blogger’s freedom. There were no offensive words that I heard. And B could have just taken the opportunity to come up in his own website with his own ‘An Alternative Blogger’s Prayer’ or something. There’s always a choice – if you are creative. That’s why I emphasize creativity. In fact, there are many choices, depending on how creative you are. (Another choice? Ask someone else to come up with A Blogger’s Manifesto or something. On second thought, I just might come up with that one. Actually, I have already come up in another blogsite with The Ten Commandments Of Blog in an article I previously published with the American Chronicle. I blog my own.

‘Instinct & Consciousness.’ If you look at the image (one of my shots during the opening polo season of the Manila Polo Club on 07 January 2007), there is a big red line that divides the field sharply into two. It’s a low-lying fence for the riders and the horses not to go out of the playing field. Still, I was conscious in composing the photograph so that there are shadows to effectively blunt the invasive wide red line. A line divides only if you allow it. You cannot cross the line from critical to creative if you will not. The shadows of creativity must always be on top of your head if you want to enjoy your photography, nay your blogging.

What prompted me to create still another blogsite this time? You wouldn’t believe it: Carl Jung. I had borrowed Baby O’s book Modern Man In Search Of A Soul (San Diego: Harcourt Brace & Co, 244 pages) and about an hour ago, I was reading in our Comfort Zone (you know, for downloading at your leisure) at our apartment about ‘The Stages Of Life’ and was struck by these lines:

It is the growth of consciousness which we must thank for the existence of problems; they are the dubious gift of civilization. It is just man’s turning away from instinct – his opposing himself to instinct – that creates consciousness. Instinct is nature and seeks to perpetuate nature; while consciousness can only seek culture or its denial. Even when we turn back on nature … we ‘cultivate’ nature. As long as we are still submerged in nature we are unconscious, and we live in the security of instinct that knows no problems. Everything in us that still belongs to nature shrinks away from a problem; for its name is doubt, and wherever doubt holds sway, there is uncertainty and the possibility of divergent ways. And where several ways seem possible, there we have turned away from the certain guidance of instinct and are handed over to fear.

Thus my tagline for The BlogFather is ‘blogging, instinct & consciousness.’ Like Jung, I believe in instinct (which I can tap through my faith or creativity) and consciousness (which I can tap through my reason or criticism) – but instinct comes first and comes last. If I understand Jung correctly, the true measure of consciousness can be found only in instinct. The true measure of reason or criticism can be found only in faith or creativity. With reason, we have only fear; with faith, we have hope and love. What more could we ask for?

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