Saturday, July 26, 2008

Garbage

I wanted to weigh in on the issue of the request for donations made on The Baseball Card Blog. Apparently there was an uproar when Ben asked for donations, although I didn't see any of this uproar, just a few posts on various people's individual blogs.

I find any and all criticism of Ben's request to be wholly without merit. First of all, if you decide you don't like Ben's content, message, or philosophy, then just stop reading his blog. Second of all, as Ben explained, he's trying to convert his baseball card writing into a full-time career. He has that right. If you don't want to help him, that's your right too.

This brings me to the subject of baseball card blogs in general. My take is that a successful baseball card blog has three critical attributes:

1) One or more knowledgeable authors who bring something to the table about cards, baseball, or hopefully both

2) Some writing skill, in terms of basic writing quality or intelligence or humor or opinion or something

3) Frequent (at least weekly) updates with fresh content

In my opinion, most of the baseball card blogs out there are garbage. I am not going to name names, but what I am going to do is update my blogroll to include only those sites that I think are worthwhile.

There are a few stellar card blog authors out there. Ben Henry is the top of the heap, and that judgment is based on the content of his blog, not his notoriety. A few others who come to mind right off are dayf at Cardboard Junkie, Steve at White Sox Cards., and Matt at Ugly Baseball Card Blog. These are guys whose passion for baseball cards and baseball come shining through on their blogs. dayf is a very intelligent guy who makes a lot of interesting points about cards and card manufacturers. Steve is very much into collecting and supporting the White Sox and even though I'm not a White Sox fan, I really enjoy and appreciate his enthusiasm. Matt is stunningly observant and humorous and makes very funny and knowledgeable commentary on individual cards. There are a handful of other great authors out there as well.

Many other blogs have two or just one of the three critical attributes and fall short of being worthwhile reading material. I get frustrated by some of the great writers out there who rarely update their blogs. Even worse, though, are these guys who think that ripping below-average players, bitching about never pulling good relic cards out of packs, or writing paragraph after paragraph full of grammar and spelling errors constitute quality blog writing.

My personal opinion is that most people who chose to criticize Ben Henry are simply jealous of his success. And it's not that these people are jealous of the attention that Ben has received, but rather are jealous of Ben's talent, which is what has led to the popularity of his blog and the acclaim he has received. These people need to take a walk and disappear.

6 comments:

Andy said...

One other thing I wanted to mention: I put my money where my mouth is, and I did, in fact, make a donation to Ben's blog.

Cannonball said...

I'm not sure if maybe my computer is somehow screwing up, but the link to Ugly Baseball Card takes me elsewhere.

Andy said...

Yeah, my baby has needed my attention and I haven't had time to update the links properly yet. Hold on.

Cannonball said...

Hey, I just wanted you to know. I'm aware that you do other things in your life than post here.

dayf said...

Thanks for the shout out, man. I was starting to get depressed about all this brouhaha.

White Sox Cards said...

Thanks for the kind words, as well. I try to keep up with a multitude of blogs and always appreciate the ones that are well written and well thought out, like yours.