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   Re: [xml-dev] Citations (WAS RE: [xml-dev] W3C suckered by Microsoft?)

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Bullard, Claude L (Len) wrote:
 > Someone came back offlist with the defense that
 > blogs are 'casual conversation' and therefore,
 > don't qualify for citations.

That would be me. As I replied earlier, outside academia uncited 
references are the norm. The average person can no more attribute 
sources for his or her ideas than a cow can sing "The Star-Spangled 
Banner" (Francis Scott Key, 1814).

If you want to try to impose a citation "obligation" on bloggers, good 
luck with it. But I think many bloggers view their product as a private 
communication carried out in public, witness their informal style, 
personal references, pictures of the dog. The fact that someone might 
overhear is as irrelevant on the web as it is in a restaurant.

Even the fact that some bloggers take themselves very seriously (which 
is, after all, the human condition) doesn't give much leverage to impose 
higher standards on them. A blog is like a spot in Hyde Park where the 
crowd can't talk back. It's a monologue in public, the crazy guy on the 

I do agree, though, that separating the "good" blogs from the "bad" is 
about as good a use for the semantic web as I've heard. ;-}


 > o  How many of your casual conversations are being
 >    googled or indexed by 'bots?
 > o  How many of your casual conversations are being
 >    aggregated by a bot?
 > o  How many of your casual conversations are returned
 >    by topical queries?
 > None, hopefully.  But this is the web where that
 > citation aggregation goes on continuously for all
 > materials submitted to it. The web is, by its very
 > architecture, an integrated open bibliographic
 > hypermedia system. No content on it unless marked
 > not to be indexed is unindexed. Unless non-serious
 > blogs have meta tags to prevent them from being
 > indexed, yes, the blogger has a citation obligation.
 > But, people ignore such obligations or forget, or
 > don't know, so the first thing a researcher
 > might want from Google or a similar engine is a
 > way to exclude blogs from a search.
 > That seems draconian to me.  So should one demand
 > a means that only certain blogs, or blogs which
 > meet certain specifications be returned by these
 > queries?  Or perhaps one uses the 'some blogs are
 > better' metrics that page ranking uses for authoritative
 > pages to only include subwebs which have proven
 > to have reliable citations.  Can that be gamed?
 > Sure.  But so can scholarly research papers and
 > all we have between us and that is the reputations
 > of the academics who edit them, which is why bad
 > citations or the lack of them are a
 > career destroying offense in that world.
 > A job for the semantic web?
 > len


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