Saturday, February 21, 2015

Book Blogger Hop February 20th - February 26th: The "Glorious 92" Were Massachusetts Legislators Who Refused to Rescind the Massachusetts Circular Letter

Book Blogger Hop

Jen at Crazy for Books restarted her weekly Book Blogger Hop to help book bloggers connect with one another, but then couldn't continue, so she handed the hosting responsibilities off to Ramblings of a Coffee Addicted Writer. The only requirements to participate in the Hop are to write and link a post answering the weekly question and then visit other blogs that are also participating to see if you like their blog and would like to follow them.

This week Billy asks: Is there anything that makes you not return to a blog or not want to look at it even for the first time?

First, bad writing makes me not want to return to a blog. If a blogger's writing is so poor that it is difficult to figure out what they are saying, or even if their writing isn't enjoyable to read, I probably won't spend much time there before deciding to abandon the blog permanently.

Second, if a blog espouses racist, sexist, or homophobic positions, I'm not going to stay as a reader. One would think these sorts of blogs would be rare, but the science fiction and fantasy genres seem to have a dedicated wing of authors and bloggers who revel in being terrible people, and an even larger circle around them who feel the need to be apologists for their friends and heroes who are racists, sexists, and homophobes. A blogger who jumps on that bandwagon isn't one I'm going to keep following either.

Finally, a blogger who is wildly inaccurate concerning things I am reasonably knowledgeable about is someone who is going to lose me as a reader. I have degrees in history, law, and economics, all three of which are much more complicated and nuanced than most people understand. I cannot count the number of times that I have seen a blogger confidently pontificate on one of these topics while being completely and utterly wrong. For example, I saw a reviewer once rake a historical fantasy book over the coals because one of the characters was reading, and, they went on, "everyone knows" that during the Medieval period, nobles didn't read, an assertion that is simply incorrect. Even more galling, the character in question was an actual historical figure, so it was possible to look them up and actually find out if there was any evidence concerning their literacy - and the record shows that the individual in question was not only almost certainly literate, but was well-educated in a number of subjects.

In another instance, I was reading a blog in which the author was giving a heated defense of the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. Things were going about as well as one might expect for them (that is, they weren't getting anything wrong over and above the usual fallacies contained in pro-Second Amendment arguments) until they decided to veer off and try to talk about the impact of the Fifth Amendment and how it would prevent confiscation of firearms even if the Second Amendment were repealed. Needless to say, pretty much everything this writer said about the Fifth Amendment and how it would apply to such a situation was incorrect. It was painfully apparent that the sum total of their legal knowledge was what had been fed to them by the pro-firearm lobby - their knowledge was extremely specific, extremely shallow, and even in the areas they "knew", their pronouncements were riddled with inaccuracies.

As a side note, although I have not done any kind of survey to establish this, there seems to me to be a fair amount of overlap between bloggers who hold racist, sexist, and homophobic views, and bloggers who confidently opine upon history, economics, and law while being simply wrong. This leads me to suspect that having a simplistic understanding of these topics may contribute to having an abhorrent world view.

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  1. Very nice answer. Well thought out.

    I hope you are having a good reading week.

    Happy Hopping!!

    Silver's Reviews
    My Blog Hop Answer

    1. @Elizabeth: Thank you. So far so good. As you can see, I've put up a couple of reviews since this post.