Joi Ito's Web

Joi Ito's conversation with the living web.


Looking for a model to follow in the IHT blog project and want to figure out what works.

The Guardian newspaper has a tech blog (check out their pipe-smoking tech editor).

But Technorati ranks Boing Boing the most popular blog by far. (Kudos, guys!)

Why do you read Boing Boing?

a - The frequent postings (up to 33 in one day, by my count)
b - The focus of stories?
c - Boing Boing should improve by . . .
d - Blog X is better than Boing Boing because . . .


I read BoingBoing because, frankly, it is like geek crack. Every time I crack open my laptop, there's five or so tantalizing new goodies for me to enjoy on the kind of geeky topics that readers like me love. You get to know the editors as if they were sitting in your own living room, cranking out new pointers to "wonderful things" every couple of minutes.

What I don't like about BoingBoing is that it has no structure. Newspapers have a good degree of organization: articles appear on pages within sections and actual human editors have made rules and put things in their places. Furthermore, in newspapers, articles only get to be about one thing, you don't get to have a column that has 10 stories in it unless you relate them all somehow. BoingBoing has none of this, it's just a chronological list of new bits of information. While it's a fun way to entertain yourself, it isn't particularly satisfying or intellectually fulfilling fulfilling.

I'm currently reading Slate's weeklong "College Symposium." This seems like an interesting model to follow. Slate invited tons of folks to submit an article on higher education. The articles all appear on the site, authors write new articles to respond to other authors, and everyone gets to comment in The Fray, Slate's online discussion forum.

Perhaps a similar model could work here: a topic is announced (with reader input of course), authors blog on the topic and submit their entries as trackback pings to the original topic post, and the highlights of the discussion appear as column you edit and publish in the deadtree version of the paper. Interested readers could go to the website and read some of the original blog posts, and if the discussion was interesting, it could go on for a couple of days in the column.

Best of luck on this project. I've always been an IHT fan (there's something so refreshingly wonderful about sitting on a train in a completely foreign country where no one speaks your language and unfolding the familiar sight of the IHT) and I hope that this can work.

"Why do you read Boing Boing?"

I don't. Boing Boing is somewhat late in the chains of events, the three or four times I tried to read it, I had always this déjà vu feeling, mixed with the "no time to read" feeling when they don't manage to post at a frequency convenient for the reader. Plus there is this amount of advertising which clutters the space and reduce the readability. Maybe the readers are going to have a more useful input than mine.

I think a lot of what makes Boingboing works is the frequency of posting (as Zach says above, "Every time I crack open my laptop, there's five or so tantalizing new goodies for me to enjoy.") I think this helps drive relevance by bringing people back. Because people come back, their hits go up, and it makes boingboing more important. It's a virtuous circle, although if you miss a week, you're never going to catch up on everything. That's ok, because the important (to you) bits will get picked up on the lower volume sites you follow. It's a tricky volume balance that they manage pretty well.

Oh, my blog is better than Boingboing because I'm more topic-focused. ;)

I get news from varied topics - many of them that I wouldn't find in a "regular" news source. That's cool.

every chaning Factiods !!!

Why don't I read boingboing?

a) every interesting thing was posted or will be posted on /. and almost every geek blog in the world. If I want to waste time at work, I read /. comments, at least are they funny.

b) there is more advertisement on boingboing than on a free porn site

c) my company's proxy blocks boingboing just like it blocks your blog Joi (and that point damn sucks)

Boing Boing, for me, is all about the content. In fact, I wish the postings were a bit less frequent.

Yes, it's true, they are rarely the first. But by reading BB I don't have to read a dozen blogs the precede it, or the hundred that follow it. My life is not readings blogs, and so it does a great job for me of cutting and concentrating the stuff that is really cool.

I find Slashdot's comments, even reading at the highest cutoffs to be less than interesting. Even though there is overlap, Slashdot seems to miss much of the cultural. BB for being forward focused, is not all that geeky.

And while there is advertising in the RSS as well, it doesn't get much in the way for me.

I think Boing Boing could grow their editorial board. I like who is posting now, but it would be nice to have more diversity. I'd love to see a combination (without duplication) of Smart Mobs, World Changing, and Boing Boing.

Boing Boing has become oddities of the internet + political commentary by Doctorow, and I don't agree with Cory's ideology. It seemed everytime I read one of his posts, my blood pressure rose 5%, so I unsubscribed.

His ideology is as abrasive as those he opposes, so I have a difficult time listening to either side. If Boing Boing dumped Doctorow, I might consider re-subscribing.

All of their contributors write from a consistent point of view.

Dare I say it.... Boing Boing is one of the few great internet brands, up there with eBay and Amazon?

It's light hearted fun (most of the time)

because i read the happy mutant handbook at just the right age and it completely changed my life. so i guess there's some brand loyalty there.

...also 'cause i like a little distraction from media consumption habits almost entirely focused on becoming a more productive human being. it is, as promised, largely a directory of wonderful things, at a time when wonder is in fairly short supply and going out & finding it would be, y'know, inefficient.

I mostly read Boing Boing for the fun stuff it points towards, but I must agree with Christopher that Cory Doctorow's commentary tends to grate on me as of late. It often strikes me as reactionary and, on occasion, uninformed.

I read it because I used to read the 'zine incarnation towards the end of its life (and still find the odd copy in the oddest of places).

That and there's some great stuff. Yeah, I disagree with Cory a lot of the time, I'm not always as into the sex posts as Xeni, I'm often confoodled by half of David's posts and Mark only seems to throw in a gem occasionally...

...but you blend all of those together and it's balanced, it's fun, there's always something I can like and if there isn't I go hit MetaFilter. Every bOING bOING editor is great to read and, as I've said, they mesh well together. I'm not expecting Umberto Eco.

I'ts like news of the wierd and wired together, and most of the other people's blogs I go to (warrenelliscom, either read BoingBoing or sometimes are featured on it.

I read BB through RSS a dozen times a day: the multifarious topics of interest are "crack for geeks" indeed. I scan the headlines, follow interesting links for a few minutes, then get back to work. BB shares wonderful things (/. snickers and has a "geekier than thou" attitude).

i read boingboing to keep me uptodate with weird things on the net. I've been following it for about 3+ years or so.

boingboing (-xeni) finds things I usually don't knwo about...

I have say Xeni sucks, most of her posts are NYTimes or about some silly show she is doing (more of the look at me mom vareity). If i want to read the nytimes i'll read it, Xeni find some interesting content, your making boingboing banal...

Two main reasons:

1: 98% of everything that is posted there is interesting and never boring. (often I see things on BB before any of the other major blogs/portals)

2: As others have mentioned, every few hours there will be consistently something new on the site.

If some of the contributors to BB (you know who you are) would stop the relentless self-promotion and instead focus on more interesting topics than yourselves, you'd get the other 2%.

I'm also tried of it being Cory Doctorow's PR vehicle. It's all about some new book thing he's working on.

Self-promoting crap. Get over yourself Cory.

because only carries 98% of the stories and I need the other 2%

I read it because it's NOT focused. It's like buying those "loot bags" at the corner store, wrapped in terrible 1950's paper and containing random goodies. Sometimes you get a toy and some good candy, other times, it's garbage...just like bOING bOING.

It's nice to have a non-niche blog once in a while, and while the self-promoting is tiring, hey, it's their site! Y'all mofo's on blogger do it too. Don't hate!

PS: Xeni is boring.

Yeah, Cory is lame. Almost everything he writes about is 1) Whine about some product / company he doesn't like 2) Over-the-top "my friend wrote me an email about this" rant that ignores the facts any google search would turn up 3) Stupid Slashdot-style advocacy of something with no new information.

I actually like Xeni the most. Her stuff is consistently interesting, and the childish political opinions are kept to a minimum.

I basically read it because for every 20 whiffs there's a good link I've never seen before. And please - saying the ads are offensive is ludicrous. 90% of their ads are for small, bootstrap-internet-style businesses. It's not like they're running Pepsi ads up there.

I'll tell you why I hate boing boing,

2. Impossible to make submissions (unless you're xeni's friend)
3. Xeni looks like she was dipped in bleach.
4. The snobbery.

I used to read BoingBoing (the zine) back in its pulp incarnation and I've probably been reading the blog since early 2000 (though it seems like it was around in the late '90s despite the lack of archives predating Jan 2000) I generally prefer the stuff that Mark and David link to, but I also appreciate having Cory and Xeni around on occasion (when they aren't hyping themselves). Actually, they could both probably take a self-promotion hint from Mark, who also promotes his work on occasion, but manages to do so on a more appropriate level/frequency for the most part.

In general, the number and variety of posts on any given day ensures that there is at least something of interest to read and investigate further. The addition of adverts was rather annoying until the Firefox extension came along to block them (though I do not wish them any financial ill will).

The overall quality of posts seems to fluctuate wildly on any given day, but they are just consistent enough that I can't help but check on a daily basis. At its best it can be a sort of zeitgeist snapshot, a glimpse into the nether regions of the internet, but at its worst (which seems to be more often as of late) it devolves into a personal platform for bitching, complaining and posturing, not to mention self-promoting [not that they ever declared it would not include these things...].

boing boing is educational, fun, and serious all at once. a good mix. i don't mind the proselytizing so long as its brief, and I can always skip over it. for those averse to ads and diatribes - get over it - start your own factoid blog, and let the ne'er-do-wells post stupid comments on it...
thanks to BB.

I'm pro-BoingBoing. The posts are frequent, varied, and usually worth of a CTRL+click in Firefox for later reading. Although there is what might be considered "a lot" of advertising, it's relegated to the sides of the page, so you can scan straight down the middle and scan for nifty content. I do have one beef, however, which is that some editors grab a topic by the horns and won't stop posting about it until I wish I knew them personally so I could punch them. I appreciate that editors have favorite topics, and, as such, what they choose to post might have a certain bias, but do we really need twenty or thirty posts on Sony's rootkit? Or SARS folk art exhibits? I think not.

If you read boing boing, you know what kind of posting you are getting - consistently. And you know what kind of topic range you are getting.

Additionally, you get a nice collection of funny things.

Third: If you read sites like bb and are not able to skim through the posts in your feedreader, you should probably unsubscribe.

Why do I read it? It has a nice collection of absurde things from all over the net which you don't need to follow, because you have bb.

I can't stand slashdot and I am not such an avid follower of comments - so I do not really mind not to have a way to comment. Because in the end, if I want to, I can do so on my blog. :)

I love it as long as it lives up to its slogan... "A Directory of Wonderful Things." Unfortunately that seems to only be about half of the space. The other half is Cory ranting about DRM or Xeni or him self-promoting. Also, do we really need links to every single reference to Katamari Damacy ever posted to the web? We get it, you like the game. We don't need to be told again how OMG mind-blowingly brilliant the greatest achievement in the history of human civilization it is.

Also, how about allowing comments?

I read boing boing because I am an information junkie and I'm gathering enough useless facts to take on Ken Jennings. I mainly read it in CSS format and I like that way it flows. It's quick and fast. It also has all the componets that I'm interest in: Technology, Hipster stuff, Weird stuff and from time-to-time you can find sex stuff.

Thank's boing boing for being who you are and all that you do.

I love boingboing: it's fast, funny, and nicely varied. I've lost count of the number of times I've searched back through the archives for a posting that was relevant to something I'm doing - and I don't do anything directly linked to what the editors do. The posting blurbs are masterpieces of brief, informative, clear writing. It's clearly not like a commercial print magazine - it's the unpaid lovechild of its creators/editors - so the odd bit of self-promotion is just fine by me. I find I agree with much (not all) of Cory's politics, which for me is a bonus, not a requirement, and I find his honest, lucid presentation of them suits me just fine. It's a blog, where you can say what you think (especially if you're self-employed). If he was on TV maybe it'd come across differently, but I suspect he'd still be more likeable than any current US political pundit I can think of right now.

If I hadn't been on boing boing I would never have found Strindberg and Helium. That alone is reason enough.

Boing Boing is nothing short of a vain, self-promotional, running commercial for Xeni Jarden, and Cory Doctorow. I finally had enough when Jardin asked the Boing-boing users to complain that a radio program she ocassionally freelances for; (Day to Day with Slate Magazine), was dropped by NPR station KCRW. Of course she supplies the name and address of the appropiate person to complain to so all of her Boing-Boing faithful can write so as to shore up her income.

And what about her pimping anything that refugee from the Star Trek TV show from the early '90s says or does? Do we care? No!

The site is over rated and most of the links they "find" are either given to them by their sycophants first on are listed from other blogs that posted them well in advance.

I read it an enjoy it. I have to skip over all of the self-promotion they do though. I guess you should expect that, but I don't think that "links to FOO talking about BAR on the radio" are helpful... I mean, if you're already reading boingboing, you're not likely to learn more for an introductory radio piece... but I guess some people dig that stuff

There's room for many great blogs, isn't there? Boingboing is usually at least moderately cool. There's that sense that, if it's up on Boingboing and I've never heard of it, there must be *something* interesting about it, and usually, if I check into it, that turns out to be true. To talk about what the blog would have to do to gain you as a reader, in terms of content, this doesn't make sense, does it? A blog is what it is. If you change the composition then what you get is a different blog, even if it shares the same name.

There is a lot of ideology there, true, but that's blogging for you. If you like the ideology then that's good, it helps you keep up on issues of interest to you. And I, for one, like the type of ideology there. Indeed, I can't think of any thinking person who could disagree with it -- but that's always the case with ideology you agree with, isn't it? If you disagree with it, it's StupidHatefulWrong, if you agree with it, ir's preaching to the choir. Well in Boingboing defense, it helped me work through a few ideological issues, so it is definitely useful that way.

On Cory Doctorow's posts, well they're not as frequent as they used to be. When I first started reading Boingboing, I was under the impression that it was actually his blog, with so few posts from the others. Now it's a fair bit more balanced between the members. Sometimes I do get the PR-spiel sense from his electronic rights posts, but again, I do tend to agree with him on these issues.

Cory and Mark's topics are actually somewhat similar in a way; Cory tends to blog on all the science fiction authors he thinks are reallyreally cool, and Mark does the same for artists.

The biggest problem I can see, besides the loss of the guestblog (sniff), is that occaisionally something will break concerning some big piece of news, usually involving some big company with some nefarious feature in their software/cellphone/computer/etc., a post will pop up outraged at their termerity, then a day or two later the little red UPDATED word will appear attached to it, along with info explaining how the post was wrong. That's happening less often now, though. And I think they should be applauded (although I'm unsure if I'm comfortable with using that verb) for correcting their posts like this when news comes to light.

On the ads, it's funny how once upon a time it seemed like Boingboing [w|c|sh]ould never run ads, but now they're all over the place? Ad creep. Two points about that: most of the ads are, in fact, for the blogger's own projects, which I tend to be more cool with that the little Absolut Apeach "Win $10,000!" box that's up there at the moment. But the thing I hate about them most is how they narrow the main text flow so much, although it's more than just that; on my wide-screen laptop, there's still a large amount of plain white space to the left and right of the body, which seems wasteful.

Is anyone else as sick of Boing Boing's use of the phrase "jaw-dropping" as I am? Also, ditto on the complaints of self-promotion and repetitive posts. One of them is OBSESSED with Disney(land).

I don't read boingboing - I read boingboing through RSS.

I like the breadth of content. The combo of geek + art + odd = good stuff. I also like the flavor each editor has. It's a lot more interesting and has more of a huamn touch than something like Slashdot.

It's a geeky fun time - especially for people who have a sense of humor. There is deffinitely alot to read and I can't stand looking at the actual page - I just read it in my rss client. But, any site that uses words like "congresscritters" and deals out so many relevant news items as well as fun useless tidbits has my vote.

Used to. Now it's a turd that I rake every few weeks to see if there's something I missed. But I read it thru an Ad-Ripper that kills their horrid redesign.

1. No more comments. They got tired of people telling them things were starting to suck, and now they really suck.

2. Cory Doctorow really needs his own blog, but I guess Mark likes keeping the activity high.

3. Cory Doctorow really needs to mature past the emotional age of 13. I don't know who would be willing to help him do that, however.

4. Xeni needs to let Susannah get her own blog.

Mark and David post cool stuff usually.

It is addictive, with post-frequency a big draw. Odds are good at least one post will deliver the goods.

Lots of respect for Cory D's accomplishments, energy, and heart. But agree the stridency of the copyfighter rhetoric can be tiresome (and likely counterproductive). After awhile it all begins to sound like "in a career-ending act of moronic self-immolation, Steve Jobs today extended DRM to iPod video."

Modulate, dude! People don't like being oversold. Consider:

Also, I think we've had enough papercraft Marios for one lifetime.

But, BB'ers, thanks in general for the roving, ADD-afflicted eye. Katamari Damacy in blog form!

Hi to Battelle.

- Ron

The best thing you can say about Boingboing is that it is mainly unboring. It's my second daily stop, after checking my mail and before visiting a media giant powered news source.

Without Boingboing the internet would be way less fun to use daily. It's less random than, it is better edited than and has better topics.

The internet still surprises me after 9 years of usage. And many of those surprises I've seen on Boingboing first.

I agree with the previous comments that there might be too many "Katamari Damacy"-related posts. Never having played it I can't really judge how good it is, though.

I read BoingBoing because I'm not geeky enough to enjoy /. and don't have enough time to track down a ton of blogs to read. I mean, I actually have a life to live. BB provides me with a constant stream of diverse and entertaining bits of information. I admit I am extremely tired of Cory Doctorow's domination of BB. The self-promotion and righteous indignation really turn me off. Really. In fact, I've quit reading BB for periods of time simply because I can't take any more Cory. I wish the others would post more, to restore a sense of balance to the blog. Better yet, give Cory the boot and replace him with someone less politically oriented.

Why do I read BoingBoing? Mark and David. Tech toys. Katamari Damacy. Mac advocacy. Geeky science links. Art & photography.

What do I dislike about BoingBoing? Xeni and 50% of Cory. Shameless plugs. DRM ranting. Pictures of sex toys not shielded behind NSFW hyperlinks. Self-aggrandizement. That Suicide Girls ad with the topless chick.

I read boingboing because of the funny stuff and the interesting and political stuff - the blogs and photos from New Orleans were poignant and wonderful. I've also learned a lot about computers, which is important since we got this one only last Dec.

But most importantly, I've found religion. Without FSM, I would be lost in the wilderness of non-belief, and I have the prophets Xeni, David, Cory and Mark to thank for spreading the word and gospel of FSM --------Allelujah!!! (Or should I say Ravioli!!!!)

It's interesting and funny. I don't have time to scour the net, so its nice to have someone do it for me. Sometimes it sucks, but sometimes it doesn't. O-yeah, I also occasionally click on the ad's so they can get paid for what they do.

lo/lmao factor...

it's like brain candy - in a world where trad delivery methods like tv and radio are kinda old fasshioned, it's nice to rock up and get my fill of weird videos and music followed by somethings to mentally chew on.

I'm hip to the Katamari posts though - I've never played, but two years ago it was Disneyland...who knows what will tickle them most in two years from now?

As for Xeni, well, she seems to have an interest in sex, which beats the other geeks! She's cool enough...

I feel like the critics of boingboing (above) have never learned to 'scan' a site/newspaper for the useful/important/relevant-to-me stuff - goddam, was that what greasemonkey was made for? I learnt about gm on bb because it stripped Xeni out of the feed.

Also, boingboing get's my girlf's approval. She call's it my baby sitter.

i read BB becuz i need more wonderfull things in my life

I read BB because David Pescovitz is the coolest man to ever grace the Web. Big sexy bald MF.

I access AND read it every day 'cause it is really funny...

BoingBoing seems to be kind of a juggernaut now. All too often, it's up to a week behind other sites like People who are preoccupied with geek-chic or otherwise techo-hip are generally irrelevant anyways. Live for something less ephermal, maybe?

The artists they link to mostly and the neato thingies and stuff. I like the technological/political/activist edge as well... without it, BB would die. Also, they seem to be trendsetters... I'll read things on BB (esp. from Xeni) and later the TV networks and other websites/blogs will start yapping about the same stuff a few years, months, days or weeks later. In addition, I like the strange zingers they throw in every now and then... like chicken rapists and stuff.

Funny you should ask... Over the last couple of weeks I've been getting fed up with the masturbatory Xeni posts (I think it was Xeni in infrared post that pushed me over the edge). Just today I told myself that if I saw another one of her horrible conceptions of the "Best of the Web" I was taking BB out of my bookmarks and relegating it to the abyss. Whaddya know? Sex machines.

Somehow BB's humor and intelligence have transformed into mere ego-stroking and fey attempts at promoting cyber-liberal fancies masquerading as journalistic integrity.

Adios, Boingboing, it was (mostly) fun while it lasted.

Sex, geekdom, creative artifacts, human rights all in one splat. Intellectual nutrition...

I read it...I guess I don't know why. Every few days I read some specific thing that irritates me to no end. Cheap hits at the current administration (as well as any opposition to EFF), a feeling of smug superiority, and slanted viewpoints have made me wonder why I read it.

christopher baus is right. Cory needs to get over himself. I've been considering for a while setting up an alternate Cory-less feed, but every once in a while he posts something interesting--usually when he's posting a submitted link. When it comes to rants and self-promotion, though, he's the worst.

(My favorite was when he ranted against the Times describing "wifi" as being short for "wireless fidelity." Not only did he refuse to apologize for busting their ass over it, but he persisted with a followup post about how dumb everyone who wrote in to tell him he was wrong is! Hey, he may be right about the etymology of the word, but that doesn't change its entry in the Oxford dictionary, or the fact that it's a silly thing to pick on the Times over. )

Not that, as a whole, BoingBoing isn't elitist yuppy self-absorbtion most of the time--but I'm an elitist self-absorbed yuppy, so I can't really complain. Most of the stuff is indeed kooky and fun. But sometimes the "I'm young and hip and we're changing the world" stuff wears a bit thin.

Oh, to answer the question more specifically, I don't think it's about focus (BoingBoing's is very broad) or frequency (though frequent updates mean frequent refreshing on my part). It's really about personality. The personality of the authors shines through with BoingBoing, and we read it because we like them (or not). Note the number of posts here about how Xeni is hot or Pesco is a genuis or Cory needs to shut up--it's like people standing around the water cooler chatting about Friends. Blogs aren't impersonal like news; they're like Op-Ed pieces (but even more infused with the author's voice).

BoingBoing just sucks, nearly as much as Maddox.

Without Boing Boing where would I be able to see 50 iPod parody posts a day or read Cory's autistic dedication to squawking about DRM yet gleefully posting about people pirating commercial PSP software.


I read boing boing for two reasons: because I already knew that it was a top ranking blog and because of the duplex reason that the content does not have the appearance of being disciplined to be "market aimed" or "marketing savvy" and is also just plain interesting.

Reason #1: Because it is the chart topping blog, I find it interesting if something I've already known reaches Boing Boing. Its a meme yardstick to me. If I see it in Wired, though, then I feel the thought has been bought already and is getting syndicated. I liked Banksy but he got syndicated. I can't do anything about that way of feeling. Its a symptom of our marketing age.

Reason #2(the duplex): Anyone with a consciousness can smell brainwash-marketing going on. Its everywhere. Manipulation only works if you don't know its happening. You don't know its happening if there isn't a better alternative in your reality. It used to be necessary to market, if you didn't do it with your idea someone else would do it with their idea and fill the slot your idea was to fit in. That was back in the day. Yet information can be valuable on its own, and in this information age it increasingly is, and therefore BB incarnates. The library is good too but BB is the low attention span version. Lord knows why we have low attention spans.

I find Boing Boing interesting, educational and freakily enjoyable. A rare combo on the internet, really.

I'm shocked at all the hate. I don't see anything wrong with the people running it promoting themselves, considering all the awesome content they bring on a daily basis. Some of links are a little dry, sure, but I read it for geek factoids, web zen and all the many fascinating links I'd never find elsewhere. If all of you are so determined to be pissy about Boing Boing, could you at least do something constructive - like dropping links to the web sources you prefer for fun and intelligent links? Honestly.

Anyways, I unreservedly "heart" Boing Boing. Plus, on a purely shallow note - Xeni? Wicked hot.

Why read BB? For that oh so good feeling of a classic unicorn moment after feeling like wretching up my lunch...

Boing boing is the only geek site I read unless fark is a geek site too. They sometimes repeat stuff I've seen elsewhere but for the most part they show me new things that I enjoy.

Cory's funny, I like that he keeps every one up to date on EFF stuff that I wouldn't know about otherwise. The daily Sony rootkit posts have been cracking me up lately too. Xeni's funny sometimes but I don't always mesh with what she thinks is cool, not going to hold it against her though it's her blog. Mark and the other guy whose name escapes me point infrequently but are generally interesting.

I understand the self promotion stuff though. It's their blog and where their fans go to hear about them. It's not like authors who aren't J.K. Rowling get many avenues to promote themselves, if Cory can do it on his blog then I say good on him. And hell, all of his books are free anyway so what is there to complain about?

And I don't know what people are talking about not being able to submit stuff. I submitted a comment a couple of days ago and they posted it, I got a real kick out of that, and I'm a nobody in the internet world (except for like 400 listeners of my podcast).

Boing boing kicks ass.

What I like about BB?

1. Ocassionally interesting links.

What I dislike?

1. No comments.
2. Submissions rarely get accepted.
3. Cory's writing is absolutely horrid. No wonder he has to give away his books.
4. Xeni and Cory's shameless self-promotion.
5. As already stated, the snobbery. I doubt they'll listen to any of the crits in these comments because they're "the most read blog" and they, of course, know best.

Fun and intelligent links as alternatives to Boing? Done.

Personally, I'm not into the kitch of it all but it does have some informative links once in a while.

Ooh. Turns out more than one person has already written a de-Cory-lizer for BoingBoing. Saves me the trouble.

For those of you wishing to filter a certain author (or keywords), try

And KDBryan, sure, Cory can promote himself. It's a free country. And I don't have to read it. If Boing Boing weren't great, I wouldn't read it despite my loathing of Cory (actually, it's more of a mild distaste). But as I'm sure you all agree (especially Cory), the Web is about choices, and freedom, and me sending people I don't like into my killfile so I don't have to read their crap. Doesn't mean Boing Boing isn't good, though--a worse blog I wouldn't read when it's 1/4 idiot.

Geek dope!!

Cheers from Iceland :)

a) i love the fact that there is always a bunch of new stuff every time i open my laptop

b) good focus - ranging from oddball humor to art to tech....all things i know and love.

c) i don't think there's much room for improvement. maybe the only thing i'd do is...when there's an update to a story, i would find a way to post it at the top of the page again, since there's something new about the story.

d) i don't think i've come across any blog that's better than boing boing. that's why its so popular. it's solid. it's candid. it's informative and captivating. in other words, it owns.

I used to read the old boing-boing magazine. One day, I found an old copy in the pile next to my bed, and decided to cold search to see if it landed on the then relatively new internet. Bingo!

I follow boing-boing daily because I desperately crave information, but I am too lazy to search for it.

As for all those freaks posting above who hate Cory Doctorow, I think that they all oughta stick their noses up their buttholes and snort.

Skimming. It's unusually easy to skip through and pick out the one post in eight that you actually want to read.

I read BB for its 'net fringe culture. The tech stuff I generally read elsewhere, but it's at its best when it's promoting some on or offline event populated by geeks, punks, and pirates. Or weird art and tech.

The key is keeping it fringe.

The bad? Cory and Xeni talk about themselves too much (but when they're not doing that, their perspectives are great: Cory's EFF stuff is pretty valuable, if frequent. I don't have a problem with Xeni's sex obsession). ...Picking up on things a week or so after the (lame) flash in the pan. And, heh, the writers know that it's brilliant. Don't take it for granted, guys.

I read boing boing via RSS because it's updated very frequently and because there's always something very interesting to me there. If they were missing either factor - low frequency but very interesting, or high frequency but boring - I'd unsubscribe. Cory's lunatic ravings are annoying and disagreeable, but they're also easy to skip past.

Because I find all the anti-DRM rants really really funny and unrealistic. Dear God Cory. Go get laid.

I'm one of the people who complained about BB above. Boingboing and Memepool are the only geek culture sites I read, and BB is by far the more active one. There's so much in there that the fraction of it that's clever and interesting or humorous is worth skimming through the rest of the stuff I don't like. So no, I don't have a better site to recommend. That's why I still read it despite all the stuff I find annoying.

And yes, of course it's a free country. They can write about what they want, and I can complain. It's the old "signal to noise ratio" problem from back in the old USENET days, except that all the content, good and bad, is coming from the same four people instead of the problem stemming from trolls.

Its like sex, drugs and Rock and Roll all "Boinged" into one!
There's always something new and if it looks like crap i wont read it.

Believe FSM

I'm not sure WHY I read BB. For every one interesting story, they post several that are garbage. Everything involving MP3's on BB that isn't music is a fucking podcast. If I could be bothered, I'd set up a filter to remove any BB story that used the word "podcast" anywhere in it. I am so tired of "podcast", "blogosphere" etc... And BB is by far one of the worst offenders on the net. Boing Boing: Home of crap buzzwords.

You know, now I think about it, the site as a whole annoys me. I think I'll remove it from my bookmarks.

Thanks for making me think about this. One less site to visit a day.

Boingboing covers a wide range of subjects in a manner that at first glance seems chaotic. What interested me is that like many other sites of this type certain focus patterns drive me to check daily for areas where politics and technology intermingle in unique ways.

Additionally I find that my sphere of awareness about obscure art, culture, and idiosyncracies of simply being have grown since being exposed to boingboing and others.

It's a simple idea: talk about what's interesting. So why do so many other sites struggle to make it work? Boing Boing's creative team, either by virtue of their respective careers or a knack for attracting ace contributions, have some literally wonderful source material. The crucial point is, when the news is old or weak or not even news at all, they have the ability to make it interesting in other ways. This is what makes a talented editor, and I believe that is what they usually are.

And when the subjects don't interest me, I'm glad they take their own advice on clear, concise headlines.

Boing Boing is the best.

Boingboing covers a wide range of subjects in a manner that at first glance seems chaotic. What interested me is that like many other sites of this type certain focus patterns drive me to check daily for areas where politics and technology intermingle in unique ways.

Additionally I find that my sphere of awareness about obscure art, culture, and idiosyncracies of simply being have grown since being exposed to boingboing and others.

As to the abcd's...

A: Brings me in more than once per day.

B: There is no real focus is there?

C: Give us a boingboing uportal!

D: Kuro5hin is better than boingboing because it is more engaging.


hey guys my book got translated into puerto rican, this is kewl ~ 8-)

check this out, now this is cool,. apparently these g3eks hacked their nikes to play a podcast of my new book translated into spanish. color me /feliz/

check out this link guys ;- )

I read BB because it's a compilation of stuff I'd have to spend an hour or two finding - if I knew where to look. It's quick, interesting and cool. And I like Xeni, Cory and the rest of the folks.

I read BoingBoing so I can see Cory Doctorow act like the capitalists he hates in shilling his current and upcoming books. There's nothing like stumbling upon one of Xeni's cut and paste articles from NPR that really don't add any signal but at least she's shameless in her self promotion and self-aggrandizement with her faux 50's pin-up photos like a LiveJournal tool.

Also I am always checking to see if they rejected my recent submissions. Let that be your grain of salt.

The rest of BoingBoing is a way to kill time and no one outside of journalism uses 'blogosphere' unless they want to come across as journalists. At least the Make stuff is interesting.

boingboing -90% of Cory & Xeni posts leads me to fun things

I read boingboing mainly for Cory's excellent coverage of DRM issues.

Thumbs up

Boing Boing is an attractive collection of links, with a good amount of sample from the pages to which they're linked. Although it bugs me when it becomes a longs list of Xenon Gardens upcoming public appearances. She does have a homepage for that type of stuff, doesn't she?

I like to read it then laugh at the news sources a week later when they report some of the same things like they are fresh lightning.

It's entertaining sometimes. And during those sometimes, there's no linux fetishists wanking over every article in the comments (Slashdot is a pile.) Thanks for having no comments, boingboing!

Because I want to put things in Xeni.

Because chicks dig it. People think I am cool because I know this stuff.

because i'm addicted.

Multiple reasons. One, I've known Corey for some time. Two, it has tech and geek links that slashdot and the other aggregators don't have (I hate the word blog). Three, there is no third reason, really.

I read it to kill time. Unfortunately there's too much ultra-liberal BS folded into it from time to time.

It's in my feed reader and is one of my most read items. There's lots of content there, so if I'm not interested in something I can just read another article.

That said, I enjoy other sites much more when I only get one article a week/month, but every article I'm highly interested in.

I get through my RSS reader and the craft n' cartoons postings really don't appeal. Xeni's postings about intelligence (i.e. national security, spying) often capture my attention, but Cory's self-promotion bugs. All in all, it fills idle time and it saves going to a dozen other blogs. Laziness rules.

I don't read boingboing.
Each time I have tried, I found it ininteresting at best, culturally lame at worse.

forgot to add that I often find LinkFilter more interesting than BB, if only because it has more posting on academic, spiritual, and paranormal stuff; things BB won't touch most of the time.

The FSM makes me.

I read Boing Boing syndicated onto LiveJournal. I also read metafilter, and digg's front page, and a lot of other mixed bag sites. Boing Boing is interesting. Sometimes they're slow, sometimes they're first. But they usually have some good links/finds.

The self-promotion that Cory and Xeni do is kind of annoying, but thankfully I can just scroll past it.

As an aside, I definitely don't read /. -- too much of the pasty nerd thing going on. I'm not interested in a bunch of slashdorks and their geekier than thou attitude.

NO COMMENTS, please! Don't want Boing Boing to turn into Slashdot or Digg.

boingboing is basically a few monkeys cherry picking from a few tags with self-promoting crap smoothly blended in.

boingboing sucks and will become irrelevant when semantic web filtering allows me to fine-tune better than the monkeys.

until then, i will suffer their rss feed in my browser, with all their self-promoting ads discretely blocked out.

What's Boing Boing?

I read BoingBoing 'cause it's just funny... funnier than Reuter's Oddly Enough.
And you got to see my friens' faces when i tell them about any post in bb!

the good:
i don't have time to read /. and kuro5hin and all those other sites every day, so i can hit BB and get the most important stuff.

also they link to interesting products now and then. i liked the vertical bookcase and the touchpad tap/click driver.

the bad:
(1) i don't have a PS2 therefore i don't give a shit about kataramadarci or whatever it is

(2) disneyland is a cheesy tourist magnet, not a cultural mecca. if i want to see 50's kitch, i'll check ebay

(3) i don't mind the self-promotion because it is their site. but i certainly don't read the self-promotion entries

(4) do they love DRM or hate it? the posts go like such:
DRM is evil!
look at this cool ipod accessory
DRM is evil!
here's a song i downloaded on itunes
DRM is evil!
an ipod with kataramarci on it!
DRM is evil!

wtf!? ipod/itunes *IS* drm. so either keep promoting ipod/itunes, or keep talking about DRM, but to do both is hypocritical and stupid

(5) "mashup" (the term) is stupid and annoying. any post with "mashup" in it gets skipped automatically.

BB is a good time killer while stoned.

Because I enjoy the random geeky links, but god damn it, Cory Doctorow is SO GOD DAMNED ANNOYING. AAAARGH. SHUT UP.

I read it because I bookmarked the RSS a few months ago and I keep clicking on it for whatever reason. I actually hate it, and have grown to extend that hate to that jabbering twit Cory Doctorow in a very real and personal manner. Self-important, self-aggrandizing, halfwit prick.

Some suggestions:

1) "Remix" is what you do with music, wherein you take one song and either change something about the existing tracks or add new tracks/repetitions/etc. to create a new version of the same song. It does NOT mean "to take anything and do anything with it with anything else." There was a post the other day about how kids naturally remix content with the power of computers or some crap. Really? Kids rip off other people's ideas and write them down as their own? No shit.

2) "Mod" is short for modification, but generally is only limited to software (as in a game mod) or computer cases (as in putting a window in an otherwise windowless case). It is NOT "take anything and do anything with it." If you have poked a hole in the crotch of a stuffed animal to make a lonely-night companion, you cannot refer to it as a "STUFFED-ANIMAL LOVEDOLL MOD" anymore than you can call a jack-o-lantern a pumpkin mod. It's just stupid, clueless, geekspeak whoring.

3) Why the hell was the whole Superdome violence nonsense posted as fact? And then somehow blamed on Bush? I don't like Bush either, but not only is the story of the FEMA failure a lot more complex than what Cory would love to believe, but then it turns out that none of that actually happened anyway.

4) DRM is not a good way to go. But rampantly stealing shit isn't either. If people can't behave themselves on the honor system, guess what usually happens. How about instead of bitching about DRM all the time Cory bitched about how freeloading assholes are resulting in our heretofore taken-for-granted fair use rights being revoked and how we could fight THEM instead of the companies who, corrupt as they are, are really just trying to avoid going out of business.

5) It needs to take comments. Only then can the ire toward Cory become apparent and only then may we hope that he disappear into his own blog of mediocrity.

In conclusion, if Slashdot covered more than just tech/science-type issues, I wouldn't have to look at Boing Boing at all as Slashdot doesn't suffer from these problems to nearly the same extent. It also doesn't have porn ads.

Boing Boing is always fresh, and i can learn from this guys

I read boing boing maybe 8-10 times a day. It might have the best content of any Web site, blog or no.

The sheer number of posts is great--the initial posts are a great gateway into the internets. From emerging memes to the latest tech stuff to surreal pop art to an unhealthy Disney obsession, it's seriously the Snickers of blogs. Rarely have I checked after a couple of hours of not checking and found the page as I left it.

The haters can hate (that's their idea of fun, i guess). But sometimes I like to look at old-time pictures of chimps wearing three-piece suits with overoats and canes, and without BB, I'd have nowhere to go.

So I guess, to answer your question...


Well, I read Boing Boing once in a while for shits and giggles. Is it the greatest blog out there? I have no idea. It's a fun read and usually has a couple of things that inform. What more can you really ask for?

Boing Boing keeps me up to date on Geek stuff, Disney Stuff, Lego Stuff, Papercraft, SciFi news, and lots of other fun/interesting/useful stuff.

Ignoring for a second that nobody has *ever* been forced to read boingboing (with the possible exception of sony's lawyers), all the cory/xeni/whatever hate here is a bit over the top.

If you don't like their writing, fine. whatever. But I'm not convinced that disagreeing with their opinion on something constitutes them sucking or calls for personal abuse.

A "Self-important, self-aggrandizing, halfwit prick." indeed.

anyhoo: i quite like boingboing, and whilst the flicr gallaries of genuine 50's kids lunchpails from the deep south hold little interest, its perfect for killing a little time.

oh! i almost forgot, re. the "bb is mass market sellout crap" stuff... Don't mistake your blog-counter-culture for anything more important than information exchange. the cultural revolution's come and gone, and left us with the tools to read each other's digital equivilent of post-it notes. sell outs? seriously, who fucking cares.

NB: Anybody that disagrees with my opinions sucks bad.


There's nowhere on the internet - that I've found at least - that collects together so many cool, weird and downright nerdy stories in one place.

I dread to think how long my work days would seem without the seemingly endless parade of oddities that BoingBoing provides.

Haha, do you think this is intended to antagonise?

Anyhow, for most of the negative comments, that April Fools 'boringboring' site had it covered - and they loved it, and reported it - so I don't think that suggests fragile egos and such.

I love Mark and Pesco's posts. Mark has a great sense of humor and style, while Pesco comes up with some bio-scientific treats that satisfy (pictures of two-headed reptiles? awesome!). Those two truly create "a directory of wonderful things."

Xeni's preoccupation with sex and her self-promotion are annoying but not terminal (as is her consistent promotion of some journalist/blogger buddies).

Cory HAS GOT TO FUCKING GO. That guy just grates on everybody's nerves. His tiresome obsessions (disneyland, mashups, super mario, DRM) are pretty spent. The worst of it, though, is his shameless self-promotion. He's used Boing Boing to promote himself, his books and (more recently) his employer so much that it really drags the site down. Cory, if you're reading this, go do that shit on

I miss some of the cooler guestblog contributors, like Todd Lappin.

Are you guys serious? Do half of you work for Sony or something?

Amazing how many people hate Boing Boing!!

Guess that means that if I can start a blog that is half as hated as Boing Boing, it will be a success!!

I read BoingBoing because I am an optimist and hope springs eternal. I have faith that one day I'll wake up to discover:

1) Xeni has been fired. 'Nuff said.

2) Cory has had an awakening and come to the realization that fawning over the Soviets is no more quaint and endearing than expressing an admiration of the Nazis (maybe he's rooting for the underdog because of Stalin's comparatively smaller annual body count?)

3) With #1 and #2 accomplished, the powers that be (such as they are) decide that it's now safe to allow feedback fora.

In my RSS aggregator, BoingBoing's subtile is "a Directory for Dilettantes"...

Checking back in 12 hours later to see what's up...

Thomas: I don't think most of us *hate* BoingBoing--it's in my most read list or so. But like I said before, one of the *good* parts of BoingBoing is that the authors' personalities really shine through. One of the *bad* parts is we don't always like those personalities (I'm talking about Cory, who seems, at least here, to be by far the least popular, but apparently some people feel the same way about Xeni--maybe I'm just unfairly biased by a (relatively) pretty face).

It's usually easier to know what you did wrong than what you did right, so certainly we all probably are spending an inordinate amount of time tearing down BoingBoing and not enough time praising it. Like I said before, if it weren't generally good, I wouldn't be able to put up with Cory's complete crap (even abouy %15 of his posts are half-decent).

Some new peeves:

* Don't post about tech if you aren't a tech writer. Even if you're fairly saavy, some of your readers are pros and they're going to think you're stupid (as in the case of the BoingBoing article last night that alleged that AOL had "hacked" into AIM users' computers).

* Even if it *is* just a blog for yourself and your family (and we all know this is not true with BoingBoing), *try* to keep in mind what your readers probably find interesting. That doesn't mean you should pander, but if everyone else thinks Disneyland is a shithole of mass market consumerism, don't go on about it at every opportunity.

* Readers love what you right. They don't love you. Don't get a big head.

I read Boing Boing on occassion. I think Manuel really summed it up for me but I should say personally it seems like a lot of blog back-patting and cooing and caaing over less than inspirational art, Disney prostate inspection, and Corey's crazy neo "everyone has a cushy job and more than 25 hours in a day to waste." And just for the record, Xeni, I have never heard you on NPR, CNN, and I don't read wired. Mostly just hype or ghost writing I guess. I mostly just go to daily. Drew Curtis is a person you can get behind. A real person of the people. Like Homer Simpson "the averagenaut", farkers are way more like the people you will actually meet in life if you have a real job and a mortgage and not the technorati. Also, there really is no forum for users to flame, troll, and actually express opinions or link updates unless you are one of the chosen by Doctorow. Again, this is not a personal use blog. Also the complete reliance on Mac software and apps while discounting their Windows counterparts is actually very infuriating. I have tried to post on a Windows based app several times when they are touting some new Mac journalism tool. Often the app has been out since Win9x and is some dinky little byte relic that has been intergrated into a browser as a plugin. Finally, most people are not shiny or happy and Corey can't write his way out of a paper bag. Anyone who calls books "treeware" should be drawn and quartered and then set on fire. I love how oblivious to being a soulless adult reverts back to childhood memories and thumbsucking. Oh yeah- Pre 1975 Disney is still the evil, world-conquering, profit mongering, Korean-exploiting current evil Disney where all of YOUR ideas are THEIR intellectual property... forever. Just go to for weird but real news and save your self the hype.

I read BoingBoing frequently because of it's super froody goodness, especially in covering socio-technological issues-- tech's impact on society and the inverse.

From time to time I'm discouraged because Cory (an excellent fiction writer, BTW) goes off on a valid technical issue with some near-psychopathic, rambling diatribe that causes the real issue to be lost, or there is a Not Safe For Work photo in the RSS feed... but overall, it's all good. I guess I'm getting better at simply overlooking what I don't like and assessing it on the whole as very a useful, insightful chronicle of technology and culture.

BoingBoing is okay but I don't get to it everyday as I did in the past. I find Xeni's post to be fluffy crap, and I'm really sick of see Disney, SF, Sony posts... It is actually quite crappy now that I think about it...unsub

Like many others, I like BoingBoing because it has amusing (and periodically alarming) articles on a wide variety of subjects that help the workday pass by swiftly. Its frequently updated enough that there is always something new to divert me.

Pfft. None of the editors need to "get over" anything. They are who they are, and BoingBoing is what it is, take it or leave it.

They certainly have enough fans they don't need to those incapable of handling an opinion or two, or heaven forbid, any articles about that evil, Unchristian "sex" stuff. Oh no!!!

I don't see why the couple of people who complained about it complained about submissions. What's this baloney about being someone's "friend?"

I've had several submissions, corrections and updates published by them over the last couple of years and I don't know any of the bOING bOINGites, nor do they read what I publish on the web. I've had one or two mid-length email exchanges with Cory and a couple of sentence fragments with Xeni and that's the extent of any interaction I've had with them. I mean, what are you expecting, more than a .5% conversion rate for your submissions?

And I'm totally using "pumpkin mod" next October.

Because it doesn't suck

Boing Boing is a nice break from all of the other RSS feeds I follow foretelling the doom, gloom, and evil in the world. When you've had enough of BushCo and Sony Rootkits, pop on over to Boing Boing. Oooh! A notebook bound with 5.25" floppies? Must have!

It's fun, I don't take it too seriously.

because slashdot has become useless

BoingBoing used to be interesting and cool when i first discovered it, and sometimes that is still the case. But it starts getting boring because it seems like they repeat the same things over and over again...
Look here, a poster of Katamari. Wow, a jawdropping Disneytowel.
Ohmygosh, its a towel with a Katamariposter in Disney style on it...

Seriously, if one of the makers read this: it would be nice to read something different from time to time.

I've been following BiongBoing for a very long time now. I dig all of the quarky stuff and the wealth of information BB provides. My old blog was a lot more diverse then my current, as my time is not my own anymore. Now I rely more on information providers since I don't have the opportunity to surf the net as much. Rock on BB!

It isn't because of the ugly backwards politics.

I absolutely love the content I find here. You continually pique my curiousity and as someone else put it so aptly, it is like crack for a geek. Keep doing what you do...I will keep reading it.

I read it for the funny or interesting links to geeky stuff. I have it in my toolbar as a rss feed, so I can select the headline that is the most intersting to me. Sure there are repeats from other blogs, web sites, etc... But BoingBoing is a filter for those. People have to find the itme somewhere and submit it.

What I hate about BB is frankly the Suicide Girls ads. It's a little close to NSFW. Especially the animate gif with the different shots of a particular girl with her hands over her breasts.

And to end on a positive note: I use the google desktop bar on my work PC, and have selected bb as a feed more my photo roll. Some of the pictures are great.

I dig the strong personalities of the BoingBoing crew. I think I read it a lot less often since they closed the comments and got rid of guest blogging. They sort of had a community around it, then totally banished that community and, who knows, that could have been the key to success. I read it alot more now that trolls on hoodwink.d can comment again.

I used to read boingboing, until I got sick of Cory's ego-massaging self-serving nonsense and that retarded "XXX moment of Zen" bitch's obvious misunderstanding of the term.

Basically now Boingboing is 80% Cory Doctorow masturbating, 19% Cory Doctorow's ejaculate, and 1% worthwhile or interesting.

Got an interesting Cory Doctorow story for y'all. Back in 2000, when I was a journalist, I was slated to interview him. I pop him an e-mail, asking him to send me a story or two of his to get a flavour of his SF work. What do I get? Twenty. Twenty flipping stories. I kid you not. The dude nearly crashed my mail server, I think.

Which I think speaks for itself. The dude has a major ego problem. Considering that the guy doesn't support other writers trying to make money via copyright laws -- and, let's face it, writers don't make much $ to begin with and we need all the help we can get -- I think that says a lot too. Releasing his novels in an utterly freeware version is doing things like undermining writers, who just want to make a living from the thing they love doing. CD sets a precedent this way: release something for free into the wild, then other writers will have to follow suit just to keep pace. It's bad enough the major newspapers in Canada are stopping the practice of paying for reprints of articles by freelancers in sister papers.

I used to hate as much as I do BB, that they were indie rock snobs (maybe they still are) but I've actually grown to respect Pitchfork. They actually have something to say, they actually care about music. They go out and look for new things. They're on the cutting edge. And they're unafraid of doing so. And no longer are they getting into flame war-esque debates, thanks to thier yanking of their message board. They've actually become respectable.

BoingBoing, on the other hand? Besides shilling for the Disney company, which is one of the most creatively draining places on the planet -- and I know a few animators who worked there -- CD was busy this week propping up anagrammed subway maps the last I checked. (The first time in a year or two, at least.) Which is kinda what CD would want: have people remix pop culture rather than go out and do original work. Less of a threat to guys like him that way. I'd love the guy to use his clout and influence to, I don't know, *help* other writers make a living?

I can't believe nerds prop this guy and his blog up.

Because Cory Doctorow's father was my prof in high school..and a damn amazing one at that. You don't meet someone like Go(r)d often in life, so his son must be hugely blessed..heh heh

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