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Blaise Cronin, Gormangate Wannabe

Blaise Cronin has never struck me as Indiana’s answer to Ranganathan, and his latest lame attempt to be a Gorman wannabe doesn’t change my opinion. But this is not Croningate; it’s just another example of bad library writing.

Cronin’s screed was written the way most anti-blog pieces are written. I just heard about blogs, the author says, and boy, are blogs dumb [translation: I’ve been asleep for ten years and someone just showed me Livejournal]. “Why do they chose to they expose their unremarkable opinions, sententious drivel and unedifying private lives to the potential gaze of total strangers?” Hey, back atcha, Cronin. If you think blogs are so unimportant, why are you writing about them? And why can’t you cite a single example of what you’re talking about? Tsk, tsk–is this any example for your library students?

Cronin doesn’t get that outside of Indiana, let alone outside of the biblioblogosphere, no one cares what he thinks–particularly when he’s thinking out loud without citing a single piece of evidence to support his argument (like Michael “bloggers say mean things about me” Gorman, who according to the blogbuzz has turned his wince-making comments about search engines into his standard lunchtime speeches). Cronin is not incoming president of ALA. His article wasn’t even printed on its intellectual merit, for heaven’s sake; it was published because he’s a library school dean. (“I’m sorry, sir, this doesn’t meet our editorial standards”–right.)

If Cronin wants to impress us with his opinions about blogs, he’ll have to come up with more than this tepid excuse for an exhortation. (Then again, just what is the purpose of his article? To improve library blogging? Show that the Internet is a Bad Place? Fill in for a vacationing commentator?) But I’m sure his comments went over well among his students, who if they are like me are just now ponying up four or five figures for the next year. Go ahead, write the big check so someday you can say, “I survived Blaise Cronin!”

Thanks to Tame the Web for the tip.

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