Editorial License

Rob Hammerton, music educator etc.

“Spam, Spam, Spam, Spam, Spam, Spam, Spam, Spam, Spam, Eggs and Spam”

This week I had a rather large number of people sign on as followers of, or subscribers to, this blog.

Well, …three. But hey!, I’m not the Huffington Post, merely the Hammerton Post. We’re working on a different scope ‘n’ scale here.

This should make me happy. And it does, no question. I can only think of two reasons that someone would subscribe to a blog. First: the subscriber likes it and wants to read more. Or, second: the subscriber detests it and wants to lie in wait, the better to pounce! …Is this too paranoid an assessment? I spent a little time this summer worrying about the latter reasoning; but I’m starting to get back around to paying attention to the former. Always look on the bright side of life, and other songs.

So, I am filled with a sense of appreciation for those people who – really! honestly! – wish to continue to read whatever appears in this space. But it also ramps up my sense of responsibility about what I write, and how.

Again: not that I didn’t hover over the Publish button for awhile before posting, over the past six months. If I thought the reactions of the Very Young Singing Sensation Fan Club could be intense, did I perhaps think it was a great idea to take my branch and poke the hornet’s nests that are (or can be) [a] the intensely devout religious persons or [b] the intensely devout Enemies of the Political Left? I mean … I like Keith Olbermann’s commentary immensely, but I don’t have the kind of personal deflector shields that KO appears to have. At least publicly, he’s always appeared to be impervious to criticism, and I mean that in an admiring way – not necessarily as regards his rumored relationships with his TV production staffers, but always as regards his willingness to make the “special comments” that he feels need expression.

When I was a relatively young person, before I came to the conclusion that I was better off as a music teacher, I majored in Journalism, and had plans to be in the editorial world. I didn’t exactly nail my original goal, which (since age 11) was to be a newspaper columnist, but I did get a job processing words a bit. As a kid, I read the newspaper, I admired people like Peter Gammons and Leigh Montville (ah! the monster Boston Globe sports section of the 1970s and 1980s), and I thought it would be great to write a column, too. I understood that it took lots of research, and it took getting knowledgeable about a subject, before a writer could write a credible column about an important topic. But I could work with that. As far as my junior-high mind was concerned, it certainly beat the heck out of covering fires and wars and shootings and the like. That’s hard, and can be, um, dangerous.

And thanks to the existence of a daily newspaper at the summer arts program I attended and of which I later became a staff member, I got my wish. The thing was fetchingly named The Daily Double [I am shocked… shocked!… to find a gambling reference in this establishment!], and its various counselor/editors were probably pretty charitable in their willingness to print my alleged work on its mimeograph-inked pages. He’s thirteen years old; what do you expect?

Maybe I’ve had sufficient years of practice at this, such that maybe the prose isn’t quite as excruciating as it used to be.

Anyway, to reiterate: people have actually signed up to receive my blog posts, by eMail, when posted. Of their own free will.

Before I had a chance to think hard about that, I figured, well, my writing is out there for the Internet public … but only the people who Google-search appropriately (or luckily) enough to find my blog, and then click through to it – so they’re choosing to view the material. Or, if my Facebook friendlies see that I’ve posted a post (in post-y way?), they’re alerted to it and can click to it, but don’t have to.

So hello and thank you, subscribers: when I post something, it comes directly to your eMail inbox and there’s NOTHING YOU CAN DO ABOUT IT.

All right, perhaps that’s not quite true. You don’t have to read it; but the way WordPress does this, as soon as you open the message, the text is there immediately. No, I guess you don’t have to open the message; but there it sits, smiling dangerously. I do know that just about any time my inbox goes Ping and it’s not spam, I get all thrilled. Subscribers, I hope you stay thrilled after you’ve done the reading.

There’s enough genuine spam in our lives, heaven knows.


January 18, 2012 - Posted by | blogging, CRCAP, Internet, journalism, media, social media, technology, writing | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,


  1. Four, now. :o)

    Comment by Holly B. Anderson | January 19, 2012 | Reply

  2. Please note that I was an early adopter and fan…

    Comment by Eric Weinstein | January 20, 2012 | Reply

  3. […] love my subscribers. I get really excited when I receive a subscription notification. I’m really flattered when someone likes my writing enough to request an email notification when I write something. Any […]

    Pingback by Boundaries « Creative Exfoliation | January 25, 2012 | Reply

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