The Finch Formerly Known As Gold

7 January 2005

Beyond osmosis

Six Apart, producer of Movable Type, is buying LiveJournal, and I don't quite see the fit.

Apophenia nails down the major issue:

Jump inside LJ culture. People who use LJ talk about their LJs, not their blogs. They mock bloggers who want to be pundits, journalists, experts. In essence, they mock the culture of bloggers that use Six Apart's tools. During interviews with LJ/Xanga folks, I've been told that MovableType is for people with no friends, people who just talk to be heard, people who are trying too hard.

Um... okay. But that's not where the merger will founder:

Movable Type is a product; LiveJournal is a community. Six Apart is seen as a community that provides tools, not culture. I suspect that if LJ goes to SA, there will be discontent from LJ users even though the media and blogosphere will hail it as an exceptionally [insert business rhetoric here] deal. Even if Six Apart doesn't change a damn thing, I suspect that LJers will feel wary, unloved and co-opted by The Man. I can't imagine them going anywhere fast but I can't see them being happy either, nor can I see them continuing to contribute economically.

Sort of like being acquired by Microsoft. Maybe we should ask the FoxPro team.

The line between journal and blog has always been slightly squiggly; LJ and MT, in their own ways, have been widening the gap, straightening the line. And I'm not sure anyone outside the actual financial players benefits therefrom.

(Via Swirlspice.)

Posted at 7:59 AM to Blogorrhea


I've always thought of Live Journal and Diaryland as Not A Real Blog tools. They are what they are for the people who use them, and there's a little crossover, but mostly it's different cultures, as you say.

So I too thought the news was a little odd, but then perhaps it will bring the culture of Not Blogs closer to being blogs. Who knows. Or maybe all the people songed and danced into investing in MT- er, I mean Six Apart, need something more substantial to keep them convinced they invested well.

Posted by: Jay at 10:53 AM on 7 January 2005

Six Apart buys LiveJournal!

In other news, "Desperate Housewives" and "Law and Order" mingle in The Television Event of the Season™

Posted by: McGehee at 1:16 PM on 7 January 2005

"Desperate Lawyers." Hm. That I might watch.

Re: LJ -- well, I started on LiveJournal (not really -- I'd had websites since 1996, and around 1999 I had started a hand-coded diary on Geocities) before shmoozing on over to Blogspot, and then decided to bank my own domain and set up blogging software. I didn't really get into the "community" aspects of LJ, and to tell you the truth that doesn't really interest me. Though I would hardly classify myself as "friendless" I do like the loner aspects of having my own blog; though is having comments open, a group of registered members, and a blogroll of favorite websites you comment on all the time really being a proper loner?

I don't see how it matters who owns LJ if the "community" aspects are left untouched, since that's what its members like about it. From what I have read of Six Apart's philosophy, they are all about the community.

Posted by: Andrea Harris at 10:47 AM on 8 January 2005