I have always enjoyed Chris Cork’s writings. Primarily because he is not ‘one of us’, it is refreshing to get ‘third-party validation’ of some of the hopes that I have for the Pakistani society.
That is not to say that I agree with most of his Opinions, no matter how regularly I consume them in the Op-Ed section of The News. His picture reminds me of not one, but two of my cousins, with the massive moustache and the wide forehead.
But this post is not about that. It is about his Coffee and Blogs piece, published on The News Op-Ed section on the 20th of June, 2011.
He talks about, in his typically informal yet structured writing, his recent gup shup with fellow writers, discussing the role of blogging in the overall “journalistic spectrum” of Pakistan. Mr Cork goes on to say that blogging is not the same as journalism, because blogging “makes no pretense of balance and objectivity (there are exceptions of course)”*.
He makes the case that Journalism is not the same as blogging.
Blogging is much, much better.
The type of writing that Chris Cork is doing – personal story-telling – is pretty much exactly what most blogs are about. Mr Cork himself tried his hand at blogging and then gave up because he “had far more useful things to say in hard print”.
I hope Mr Cork reconsiders. Because no matter what he plans to achieve via the ‘hard print’, he can do it better with the not-so-hard one.
It is obvious that all forms of tangible media is on its way down. I have said this before (here) and I would say it again, that tangible media like paper-based magazine and dailies are themselves a niche market now.
The very market that people like Mr Cork is trying to reach (and perhaps influence, perhaps not) is already online, either updating their FB DP’s (look it up) or painstakingly curating their blogs that no one else reads.
I am a professional blogger and I thought it would make a great case study if Chris Cork does decide to take ‘this blogging thing’ seriously. Almost half as seriously as he takes his insightful ‘print’ writing.
So I have already booked the domain www.chriscork.net (.com was already taken!).
If Mr Cork is reading this, I hope he does accept the gift (I have already paid for it, and I only know one Chris Cork!!). What would really, really be awesome would be for Mr Cork to consider the medium of blogging (it is – really – nothing more than a medium) seriously. And to perhaps start building a community online for his readers, currently the best place to actually do so. If not so, then perhaps use the domain name to set up his email (something like email@example.com etc – and I’ll help in setting it up, for free of course!).
P.S. It is a different matter altogether that people are making money – and earning a living with the odd 40 to 100 thousand US Dollars per year that they make – while telling stories, entertaining and helping people out, all through the medium of blogging.
*Journalism does make a pretense of objectivity and balance, only to fail miserably at it.