In which a group of graying eternal amateurs discuss their passions, interests and obsessions, among them: movies, art, politics, evolutionary biology, taxes, writing, computers, these kids these days, and lousy educations.

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College administrator and arts buff

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Architectural historian and arts buff

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Entrepreneur and arts buff
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August 28, 2009

Blogging Note

Donald Pittenger writes:

Dear Blowhards --

Aside from unusually heavy political news this month, the calendar still insists that it's August, which apparently has something to do with dogs, days and such.


So, what to write about?

Well, since it has been almost four years since I signed on as Second (in terms of posting frequency) or Third (in terms of active seniority) Banana hereabouts, I thought I'd mention a few things about 2Blowhards that might be of interest to newer (and perhaps to some long-time) readers.

Over in the panel to the left is a segment with one-sentence descriptions of this blog's writers along with our email addresses. My name happens to be listed first because the names are in alphabetical order. This artifact leads some folks to think that 2Blowhards is my blog, so I occasionally get emails proposing advertising, link-sharing and other fabulous deals. I also get emails regarding everyday blog-related stuff. But [bad alphabet! ... naughty, naughty!] it's Michael who's the 2Blowhards proprietor and (unfortunately for him) should be the target for any pestering or (lucky him) be deserving of any kudos you want to pass along.

As most of you know, Friedrich was the other member of the original 2Blowhards pair. He was a college pal of Michael and their email correspondence about the arts and such was the genesis of this blog. Business and family responsibilities were such that Friedrich had to cut back blogging activities, though he still contributes thoughtful, well-received postings.

Fenster and Francis posted for a while after Friedrich changed his focus, but are inactive contributors (until they decide to post something).

I don't know how how other "group blogs" -- those with more than one writer -- are organized. However, I suspect that their organization is pretty loose, as it is here. When I joined, Michael's main expectation was that I should contribute at least two posts per week -- one being longer, the other could be short. A little later he mentioned that, if one of us posted something that had taken a good deal of effort to create such as interviews, then the other bloggers would, as a courtesy, hold off a day or so from burying that posting with new postings.

Since Michael lives in New York City, Friedrich lives in the Los Angeles area and I live in Seattle, we don't get together in person much. Actually, Michael and I have only met once, that being near Santa Barbara, a favorite 2Blowhards haunt. We've talked on the phone , but mostly when I was getting on board. We email once in a while to give the other a heads-up. For example, if Michael has an interview series in the works, he'll let me know. And I'll inform him if I'm going to be traveling and unable to blog at my usual pace of three or four postings a week. Otherwise, we work independently, monitoring future content using the "Entries" feature of the blogging software.

Due to spam appearing in Comments, we were forced to monitor comments to postings. So you might write a comment and won't see it appear on the Internet for a while. Michael and I check for comments when we can. But we have lives to live and sometimes are away from a computer for a good part of a day. Or a comment might go online within minutes; timing is everything, as they say.

We prefer that comments be civil. Almost all of them measure up, but occasionally a polite exchange of views collapses into name-calling. If things seem to be getting out of control, we can and do refrain from posting excessively vile remarks. We feel that this is in the best interest of 2Blowhards readers who strike me, at least, as being an unusually knowledgeable and civil group.



posted by Donald at August 28, 2009


"I don't know how how other "group blogs" -- those with more than one writer -- are organized."

ChicagoBoyz is not organized.

People are invited to participate. If they agree to do so, they are set up so they can post. Each contributor is free to post when or if he or she wants. There is no agreement or understanding regarding content, frequency or anything, other than that the posts be grammatical. If someone got way off the ranch, the blog's founder could, theoretically remove them. Nothing remotely like that has ever happened. Some contributors have largey gone silent. Others come and go. It is very open.

So far it has worked nicely.

I would even say there is a sense of community and shared endeavor among the frequent contributors.

Each person posting is responsible for policing his or her comments, per the posted comments policy. I tend to delete with a heavier hand than the others, but it is still only rarely necessary.

Posted by: Lexington Green on August 28, 2009 5:39 PM

Thanks for this interesting post. I had wondered about the genesis of 2Blowhards and who Fenster and Francis are.

Posted by: James on August 29, 2009 9:24 AM

Question: Why is Michael anonymous on this blog?

Posted by: James on August 29, 2009 9:25 AM

James -- When the blog started in 2002 and until spring 2008, Michael worked for a media-related firm in New York. Actually, I had been aware of his real name long before the Internet and this blog appeared. His reason for anonymity was to minimize the possibility of "making waves" at the office. Since his "retirement" (an anodized aluminum parachute deal when his company went through a downsizing) he has retained the nom de blog in part because it is now so well known in Internet circles -- or so I think; perhaps he'll hop in and explain more precisely.

Posted by: Donald Pittenger on August 29, 2009 10:29 AM

What Donald said.

Posted by: Michael Blowhard on August 29, 2009 11:05 AM

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