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According to Wired magazine : "When they write the account of the 2004 campaign, it will include at least one word that has never appeared in any presidential history"; what word is it?

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Answer: blog

As quoted by Wired, Stanford law professor Lawrence Lessig said:

"When they write the account of the 2004 campaign, it will include at least one word that has never appeared in any presidential history: blog . Whether or not it elects the next president, the blog may be the first innovation from the Internet to make a real difference in election politics."

The above was taken from The Revolution Will Not Be Blogged by George Packer (Mother Jones, May/June 2004 Issue). He goes on to say:

"The constellation of opinion called the blogosphere consists, like the stars themselves, partly of gases. This is what makes blogs addictive ⦣x20AC;” that is, both pleasurable and destructive: They're so easy to consume, and so endlessly available. Their second-by-second proliferation means that far more is written than needs to be said about any one thing.

To change metaphors for a moment (and to deepen the shame), I gorge myself on these hundreds of pieces of commentary like so much candy into a bloated ⦣x20AC;” yet nervous, sugar-jangled ⦣x20AC;” stupor. Those hours of out-of-body drift leave me with few, if any, tangible thoughts. Blog prose is written in headline form to imitate informal speech, with short emphatic sentences and frequent use of boldface and italics. The entries, sometimes updated hourly, are little spasms of assertion, usually too brief for an argument ever to stand a chance of developing layers of meaning or ramifying into qualification and complication.

There's a constant sense that someone (almost always the blogger) is winning and someone else is losing. Everything that happens in the blogosphere every point, rebuttal, gloat, jeer, or fisk (dismemberment of a piece of text with close analytical reading) is a knockout punch. A curious thing about this rarefied world is that bloggers are almost unfailingly contemptuous toward everyone except one another.

They are also nearly without exception men (this form of combat seems too naked for more than a very few women). I imagine them in neat blue shirts, the glow from the screen reflected in their glasses as they sit up at 3:48 a.m. triumphantly tapping out their third rejoinder to the WaPo's press commentary on Tim Russert's on-air recap of the Wisconsin primary."


What is the origin of the word blog?

[Mootguy: It was coined by contracting the word weblog.]

Yes, but what exactly is a blog? I guess by accretion of example I can sort of infer what it is: it's a kind of sound-bitey, meme-y thing whose trumpeting of itself carries little substance. Is that a blog? And is "blog" itself a blog?

[Mootguy: A blog (i.e., web-log) is a series of postings to a website. There is special software that allows you to do this quickly and easily. It allows individuals to have a kind of public diary. As some individuals are more interesting than others, some blogs are more interesting than others. Check out:]

for an example of an interesting one.

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