The post I had planned for today didn’t pan out. Who knows, maybe I’ll regain steam with the topic soon. But I think it lost steam because I was trying my hardest to be fair and reasonable. A comment on a post last week noted I am usually very fair (though that day was a possible exception – opps) and I hope it’s true – I work pretty hard at not being ridiculous or condescending.
And here’s my lament: fair and reasonable doesn’t get blog readers. It doesn’t hit those nerves that gets people all fired up. But – sensationalism does.
I was in a bookstore today killing time while my daughter napped on my back and I noticed a trend in the Christian section – that what moves copies are books blasting certain ideas or practices. It’s just the nature of our culture – extreme sells. Shock value is huge – it grabs attention. And it’s turning into just saying something simply to get a rise out of people, rather than saying something because it’s worthwhile.
I know what brings traffic and gets the bird chirpping – writing about homosexuality or sex scandals or other hot topics. But I don’t want to write about them just to get people to read my blog – I don’t want to manipulate people. When my original post was dying on the table I thought about what controversial thing I could write about since I needed something new to write about. I only considered it for a few seconds – and my lament is that I could have written that post and, well, it could have worked.
And I’m not interested in writing a book or anything, but it’s annoying that those tactics work – that magical words or ideas can be tossed in rather than thoughtful, graceful insights and exploration.
I guess it’s just a reminder that things aren’t as they should be – as if this was something I really needed a reminder of.
What do you think of the shock value trend? Does it ever feel like manipulation to you too?