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Friday, October 3, 2014

Are Wine Blogs Dead?

There is nothing more vapid than a philistine petty bourgeois existence with its farthings, victuals, vacuous conversations, and useless conventional virtue. ~ Anton Chekhov

Do you know what lazy wine-writers do? They look around for easy stories to write; a story which requires very little imagination or effort on their part to publish. But there’s one thing they do know, sensationalism sells, and titillating headlines get people to clicking and clicking means dollars. Writing stories like that are akin to the uber-sexy-model [mile high club] biting down on two pounds of obscene gluttony; it makes their advertisers very happy and it also makes their editor very happy as well, if they have one and provides new content in a snap of the fingers.

Why, human nature of course, it’s because folks will flock to any story to see the proverbial straw-man setup and then summarily knocked over again and again to great fanfare. The adoring fans of said writer, like a pack of obsequious zombies, prostrate themselves in their comment section and exclaim, “oh-my how great thou art” you had the courage and intestinal fortitude [insert hand-wringing, tortured anguish here] to declare that all wine blogs are dead.




Perhaps, these wine-writers are simply tired of maintaining an active blog, tired of writing notes, tired of the whole concept or they're flat out bored. It's way too easy to throw stones and mock, creation actually takes some sincere effort. After-all it's a wee bit of work to stay current, relevant and producing new weekly content. It can be a down-right chore to folks who may have lost their passion for this platform; it's far easier to mock others. Honestly, I don't really understand the motivation.

I took a look around the web [googled the search term, are fill in the blank dead] it seems wine writers are not the only folks guilty of this type of lazy journalism. it's rampant in the Food Blog community as well. Even the "Mommy Blogs' are guilty, but to a far less degree. Then I checked out Sports Blogs, and found virtually nothing, and the same for Political Blogs, they don't seem too interested in eating their own. The difference may possibly lie in the fact that a good many of these types of bloggers get paid and as we all know, that most [a majority] wine-bloggers, using this medium of expression it's not a paying-gig.

One of the possible reasons these stories are seemingly so prolific, is because there's some small kernel of truth to what is being proclaimed as evidence of the demise of wine blogging. The truth about the state of the wine blogging community was revealed during the Wine Bloggers Conference, far more wine-blogs are biting than the dust, than are being created and/or maintained; again we circle back to getting paid vs working for free.

Secondly, it's true that for far too many wanna-be wine-bloggers, once the squeaky new-shine has worn off the fancy, glitzy website, and reality settles in, the content monster comes a-calling [ouch]. At this point it becomes much easier to ditch it, shelve it, or what just flat forget about it. The truth is very few wine blogs have 6 or more years of continuous activity, like the one you're currently reading.


To those who write such articles; I say to you so what, and who really cares why you think wine blogging is on its way out, who made you the final arbiter and why pray-tell should we listen to you anyway? Every time I see one of these stories on twitter or Facebook, I attempt to shoot them down, point and even mock it openly and get no reply. To me these claims are nothing but a bunch of silly, inane balderdash masquerading as serious content. If you have nothing other than negativity to spout-off about, then why don't you just keep it to yourself, please shut the front door. No one wants to read you bemoan the demise of wine blogging again, and you know who you are, so again, please just stop. 


But back to these wild-eyed speculators of wine-blog doom and gloom; if these so-called prophets would spend more time writing about wine and less time belly-aching about this or that, they may actually see more samples, generate more traffic and have far less to wine-about. That said, it's my opinion that wine-blogs are far from dead. But when I do see more than a few blogs bite the dust, I simply chock it up to a mere thinning of the herd, many of the noisy-gongs and clanging symbols going by the wayside, it's just the natural order of the universe, something people use to call evolution. I hope I've been able to make the case for you here today, that wine blogging is far from dead, it's changing tho, hopefully getting better, evolving and yes while some even lie dormant, like a collapsed star; many still shine brightly in the night sky.

Well that's all I've got to say on the subject for now. See I didn't have to cuss once to make my point. But believe me I'm no "saint" and many of you who know me understand, I'll use colorful language when the situation calls for it. 
If I may ask dear reader the next time you see such an article, please don't give them the time of day, eventually they'll get the message that these types of article are nothing more than lazy writing masquerading as serious content [yes, I've said it again and in the same way, because it bears repeating].

As for me this is just a fun hobby, one which I really enjoy. I have had the privilege of tasting far more wines than I ever imagined I would have. I've been lucky enough to mingle with great producers, winemakers and other wine writers who I admire greatly, all from many corners of the wine world. I've been invited and taken on more than a few wine-finding pilgrimages many times; a fact for which I'm extremely grateful.

This blog has just turned 6 years old and to be honest folks I'm really just getting started. As this blog continues to grow, change and evolve, so do I and I believe that is a good thing. I don't write about the industry [I'm not an insider] nor do I write for other wine-bloggers, just so I can be seen as one of the cool-kids. Don't get me wrong, if another wine blogger desires to read my blog, great, and thank you. But that said my primary audience is for the average wine consumer who's tired of slugging down cheap, overpriced commodity wines, who are looking for alternatives. 
I think there are about ten readers or so who see the value of the content brought to the table here and I appreciate every one of them.

Until next time folks, remember it’s just wine, it’s nothing to wine about, but in the proper context it will enhance the "experiences" in this life, so sit back, relax and always remember to sip long and prosper cheers!

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5 comments:

wineORL said...

Hear, hear, hear. I can only surmise about the engine that drove this particular post but I, like you, keep my head down and write about the things that I like to write about. I am also very inteersted in what other people are writing about if I can learn something from it. You guys continue to do a great job over in that corner.

Bill Eyer said...

Thanks, you're the first one brave enough to leave a comment, kudos to you.

Regarding the motivation for this post, I was just hoping to inject a bit of commonsense into manufactured discussion about wine blogs. I'm happy to hear you agree with the points I made.

I enjoy reading your blog, and I've added a link to your blog via the blog roll. And if more wines bloggers were as diligent as you're they'd have far less to wine about.

Thanks for the kind words, Andy and I work hard to keep our content interesting.

All the best,

The Cuvée Corner Wine Blog team.

Miki "This is the Life" Winer said...

Bill, Congrats on 6 years! It is encouraging to hear in your words the joy you get from wine writing. I hold firm to..."when it's no longer fun, stop doing it!". Keep up the great work and being true to yourself. Cheers!

Bill Eyer said...

Hi Miki,

Thank you, and thanks for taking the time to comment on this important article. You're so right on when you say, "if it's no longer fun, than what's the point?" I'm enjoying the ride so far, and I make no apologies for being who I'm and saying what I think needs to be said!

Cheers,

Bill

Alison said...

Love your honesty, Bill. I think we'll see a different crowd and be having different conversations at WBC15. Glad I'm not the only one writing for the industry folks! Keep up the good work!

Cheers,
Alison
www.bonvivantdc.com/blog

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