Neil Turner's Blog

Blogging about technology and randomness since 2002

Blogging terms that should be banned

The world of blogging and podcasting has more than its fair share of buzzwords – blogs, RSS, trackback, pings and so on. Buzzwords are fine for those familiar with them, but they create a barrier for new entrants into the blogging world, which either leaves people confused or puts them off entirely.
Though there are already lots of buzzwords around, there’s no reason why we should add more as they will only worsen the confusion. This is why I take issue with several ‘new’ buzzwords I’ve heard lately:

vidcasting
Vidcasting is video podcasting, and a vidcast is podcast that uses video rather than just audio. My question is, why does this need to be a separate term? Podcasting is starting to get mainstream recognition, so it’s a term people understand, therefore stick ‘video’ on the front and most people who are familar with podcasting will know that it’s a podcast but with video.
bleaders
Bleaders are ‘blog readers’ apparently. Apart from being a homonym for ‘bleeders’ (which implies that all people who read blogs also self-harm themselves… make your own mind up about that…) it is also completely unnecessary – what is wrong with just calling them ‘blog readers’ or even just ‘readers’?
spamback
A spamback is trackback spam. Considering that trackback isn’t a straightforward concept to begin with, introducing yet another term just makes things even more confusing. There’s no need for it.

5 Comments

  1. I think vidcasting is fair enough, video and audio shouldn’t be coupled in together. This confused me when I was browsing through podcasts on the apple store and I found some were videos which I didn’t want. I just wanted the audio so why waste a lot more bandwidth to see someone talking?
    Podcasting is a bad buzzword in it’s own right. It ties the idea down to a specific device, which can confuse people getting into it, who don’t have an iPod and want to play it on their ‘bog standard mp3 player’. Well, they’re just mp3s that come in like RSS… nothing ties them to a specific device apart from the bad name. Meh.

  2. Neil,
    As a former magazine editor who is just learning the blogging trade, I couldn’t agree more. The cumbersome jargon that permeates the “blogosphere” is one of my biggest pet peeves about this otherwise fascinating activity. Littering one’s writing and speech with jargon doesn’t make you sound cooler or more intelligent, and it ultimately limits your audience. The true measure of sophistication, whether in print or online, is the ability to express complex ideas in clear, simple language.
    John Christy
    borderlessinvestor.com

  3. I’ve never heard of any of those, actually.

  4. Goddamn, I hate people who have to finish their comments with tags like in emails. Get over yourselves and your websites!

  5. The term, Vidcasting is very acceptable & needed. I’ve seen Vidcasting used in the context of YouTube. Every video on YouTube and MySpace is a Vidcast. Thus, everyone who showcases their videos are “vidcasting” to the world.
    However, I agree with the other jargon you present, they are not needed.