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f/k/a archives . . . real opinions & real haiku

March 25, 2005

podriahs — blissfully outside the pod-caste system

Filed under: pre-06-2006 — David Giacalone @ 1:52 pm

Call me an out-of-touchable, but I am happy to remain at the bottom

(actually, outside) of the new podcast caste system.  JurisPundit got it

right last week, asking What’s the Big Deal With Podcasts? (March 18,


microphoneG  “Basically they’re just short audio recordings of blog posts.

Why?  Why would anyone do this? It just sounds like a horrible idea. . . .

Rather than amateur broadcasters, we’re listening to amateurs

pretending to be amateur broadcasters.”

I say this, despite my respect and even affection for many of the Blawgmins

of podcasting (like Denise, J. Craig, and Kevin & Evan).  The defense of podcasting

yesterday by its acolyte-advocate Evan Schaeffer made me even more certain

that this is a “next big thing” that I can safely allow to pass me by:

“But the revolutionary thing about podcasting in these early stages isn’t

the content, but the way the content is delivered. Using software like

iPodder, the content is delivered to your mp3 device automatically.

Podcasting is TIVO for your iPod. You can choose what you want to

listen to and you can listen to it without having to sit at a computer. Not

only does podcasting give you more options than with radio, but the

content isn’t governed by the restrictive FCC-enforced rules that have

 made ordinary radio so plain vanilla. And that content continues to

improve every day.”

juke box  Oh, Boy: something that’s kinda like radio, that I can listen to anywhere, but

with the 7 Banned Words included, and the quality level debatable!    I’m in

that stage of life where I just don’t need to jump into every technology, just

because it’s new or popular.  I’m also trying to buck the American mania-addiction

for putting sound into one’s ears every waking moment.   Podcasting doesn’t jibe

with my needs and desires as a human being right now (no matter how much I’m

dying to know what a particular web personality sounds like).


casting no light
for me, an orphan…


As a weblogger, I visit other sites for content, commentary, and camaraderie.

I’m also pretty selective about which posts I read– like Ann Althouse, I do

a lot of skimming and skipping. (cf. Jonathan Gewirtz)  A primary advantage

of weblogs is the information management that it gives us, including the easy

ability to decide if a post is worth perusal, to quote a passage in assent or 

dissent, or to find it quickly at a later time.  Podcasting might nurture a bit of

camaraderie, but facilitating the use and organization of information are not its

forte.  For me, information is far better processed and preserved through written

text.  And, I just don’t need a new form of audio entertainment right now.

Bob Ambrogi recently asked whether podcasting is the  erasingS

next wave in CLE  (LTN, Feb. 25, 2005).  Personally, I’ve

always wanted some text to go with my CLE courses — on

paper or in pixel form.

Most of podcasting’s Blawgmin originally got into weblogging because

they are attracted to new technology and to being among the first-users.

They got into iPods because they have to have every new audio gadget

(or got one for Christmas) and love being awash in music.   I’m no longer

in either demographic group and, frankly, I think there are a lot of over-40-

somethings on my side of the techno divide.  Many of “us” only recently

became weblog writers and/or readers.   Cluttering weblogs with podcasting

links, posts, and references — and taking away from the content and quality

of weblogs by spending time instead producing podcasts — is unlikely

to make weblogs appear useful and attractive to those outside the



microphoneF Maybe we could just outsource podcasting to India (or did they export 

the caste and characters to us?).  Call me a Proud Podriah. Ignorance may

not be bliss, but silence sure can be.

p.s.  Once again, I marvel that the legal highpriests of podcasting

have so much time to test and participate in all the newest technological

trends.  Don’t their clients wonder when any legal work gets done?

Don’t their spouses rebel against being virtual single parents and

website widows?


p.p.s. [update 6 PM]:  Having re-read the original version of this post, I am

reminded of one very big advantage of podcasting:  No Typos.  My apologies

and thanks to those who read through it, despite my inputting difficulties. Looks

like I better go back to a bigger font size, or start using that new SpellChecking

technology.  As always happens when I closely proofread an entire piece, I have

snuck in a few additional points or barbs. (Sure hope I haven’t created more



Thanks to Kevin and Evan for responding with their customary good

grace — and for creating a weblog that segregates law podcasting from

their other web sites.   However, given some of the queries that keep

showing up on my referers page, I don’t entirely buy their notion that

“since I like it, I figured others will, too.” 

update (March 25, 9 PM):  Responses that I’ve gotten from interested webloggers have

convinced me that this lighthearted post needs some clarification:  I have presented the

personal reasons for my lack of interest in weblog podcasting   I do not have additional

time or energy to spend at other weblogs (or in producing my own), so I’m sticking to 

written content and not exploring podcasts.


erasingSF  It should go without saying, that I am in no way suggesting that anyone

who enjoys podcasting, or wants to seek its entrepeneurial or pedagogic potential, stop

doing it — just as my dislike of beer doesn’t make me want to deprive others from enjoy-

ing it, but does mean that having a kegger is not a good way to get me to come visit.  

I agree completely that podcastingcan be just as useful as any stored audio medium,

and offers a convenient mechanism for receiving the content.  However, downloading

audio content is not exactly revolutionary in 2005, and RSS aggregation suggests a

commitment of free time for added listenting and browsing that I am not willing to make. 

My life is full enough, that I can safely risk never knowing the joys of podcasting.  If that

makes me an out-of-touchable, I humbly accept my karmic destiny.

tiny check JurisPundit Jeremy Moore has devoted a lengthy post to the

conversation provoked by this post.  The caste of characters involved

in the e-mail thread includes Evan Schaeffer, Kevin Heller, Robert Ambrogi,


update (March 29, 2005): See technogagdetophile Ernie Svenson’s admission that

“I’m definitely getting older, and I’m clearly losing my edge. That’s the best explanation

I can offer for my inability to achieve ‘tech-epiphany’ over the whole podcast revolution,”

at the new law-tech group weblog Between Lawyers.



outcast village–
“cuckoo! cuckoo!”
of the mountains



watch out, kids!
don’t let those red mushrooms
cast a spell


– above haiku by ISSA (translated by David G. Lanoue) –



from dagosan 

podcaste pariah –

can’t hear

the compliments






Good Friday

the apostate

sees crosses everywhere

                                              [March 25, 2005]




“tinyredcheck”  This being Good Friday, it seems like an appropriate time to reprise two posts in which

we bestowed our JuDee Awards —  the Judas Esqariot Award is given in recognition of exceptional

efforts to promote the financial interests of lawyers, while purporting to protect consumers

of legal services.   JuDees have been awarded to Illinois and Maryland bar groups, and

to the NYSBA


tiny check  With all the fuss lately about new ethics weblawgs, I’ve been remiss in checking out Arnie

Herz’s legalsanity.  My referer page reminded me to check it out today, and I was rewarded with two

posts (from March 23 and March 25) dealing with the lawyer’s need to improve relationship-building

skills.  Arnie notes, “Law schools will go a long way towards fostering happier lawyers and a healthier

profession if they recognize and teach the human relations skills that are so vital to optimal lawyering.”

penny sm  penny sm   Martin Grace grudgingly reminds us that competitive prices are not always afforable prices.

four-star dining experience

Filed under: pre-06-2006 — David Giacalone @ 10:47 am

Until yesterday evening, I had never met any of my Honored Guest poets

in person.   A long dinner at an Indian Restaurant with John Stevenson was

even more interesting, thought-provoking and enjoyable than I had expected. 

Being an audience of one for intermittent readings of John’s favorite haiku and

tanka was an unexpected treat.


I shouldn’t have all the fun.  Here are three haiku by John Stevenson from

Quiet Enough (Red Moon Press, 2004):



early Alzheimer’s

she says she’ll have . . .

the usual







dining alone

I rehearse

a conversation




diner dude gray





the tethered dog

watches the guide dog

enter a deli



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