Sunday, May 03, 2009

Meta-talk: photos, and that "gonzo" stuff


Today, I need just to clarify a few points about how to “relate” to my blogs, especially the photos.

With most entries, I include a photograph in order to provide a visual experience was well as a textual one. If I have a photograph that is related to the content of the blog, I use it. That means, a photograph that I took myself. Recently, I’ve started using some public domain or Wikimedia Commons pictures with attribution. Generally I only use pictures of places I have been to personally and could have taken photographs of myself (except for other planets, where no one, except the Moon, as been yet). When inside museums or other facilities, I follow the property’s policy on photography: some permit it, some don’t.

Not all photographs are related to the content; some are just “decoration.” If no apparent relationship seems to exist, then there probably is none. I try to use care in using photographs in such a way as to accidentally convey an unfavorable impression of some entity. No other inference should be made that the photo has any other connection to other any element of the blog. I see that I wrote a previous “policy” on these matters July 12, 2008.

Again, I take up many different subjects, and try to present a balanced view. Because the blog has labels, one can click on a label and get the impression that there is a particular focus on the wrongdoing by some particular entity. There is not. It’s all context. But some people will wonder why I meddle in public with something in which I have no “standing”. “Mind your own business” they say. Join a union first. Well, you know the theory: everything is connected to everything, and everybody can be affected by anything (like the latest orchestrated corporate bankruptcies, for example).

Yes, objectivity is important to me. Some people say that objectivity is a luxury for people without responsibility for others. I could name George Mason as an exception – and you could call him a hypocrite over slavery (for that matter, so with Jefferson, below) or say he was born ahead in line. True, and “karma” is a big issue for me; that’s ultimately what a lot of these posts are about.

A particular blog posting may focus on the views or accounts of something by a particular person or, say, op-ed columnist. One needs to look at a number of related postings (the label below) and read the original linked source to get a more balanced view.

These blog posts are a retelling of the news, usually with a touch of personal “gonzo” interpretation, sometimes leading into distant areas, like abrupt musical key modulations. The idea is to help the visitors to get a “really big picture.”

The picture is Thomas Jefferson’s home Monticello, in Charlottesville, VA; my last visit was in 2006; it has reopened. Attribution reference is here.

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