Welcome to the home of Noah Brier. I'm the co-founder of Variance and general internet tinkerer. Most of my writing these days is happening over at Why is this interesting?, a daily email full of interesting stuff. This site has been around since 2004. Feel free to get in touch. Good places to get started are my Framework of the Day posts or my favorite books and podcasts. Get in touch.

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One Billion Creators

Whenever I tell the story of building Brand Tags, I explain that I finally decided to launch the stupid thing because I was feeling guilty about not having blogged in a while. (In the post where I introduced the idea I opened by explaining that, “In lieu of actually writing something interesting (which I haven’t done in a while), I’ve decided to release a 70% done project.”)

Just today I was feeling it again as I looked at the last time I wrote a “full entry” (which is what I call those things on the left side of the blog). It was December 31st, which is over a month ago and that post is hardly an insightful or interesting piece of writing, it’s just a list of a whole bunch of blogs I steal ideas from.

None of this is to say much, except that I think it’s funny that in the 21st century we have the luxury to worry about things like whether our blog audience is feeling as though we’re paying an adequate amount of attention to them. In some ways it’s incredibly egotistic, as if there’s a whole bunch of you sitting around waiting for me to write something (which you are obviously not). In another way, though, it’s the flip side of the whole “attention thing” people love talking about (I refuse to call it an economy).

As a content creator, albeit a small-time one, I feel constantly on the hook for finding interesting things to share with all of you. I scour the internet daily, looking for tidbits and ideas that are worth of your time and attention. It shapes what I read and, maybe more importantly, how I read it, as I am constantly reading with a critical eye towards insights.

I guess the point is that too little attention is paid to the effects of so many of us being content creators, since the consumption part is the topic-du-jour. Just think about how it changes the way you look at everything, even if you’re only a creator amongst a tiny group of friends or family. Look at how differently you judge photos that are going to the web or how you’ve learned to describe experiences on Twitter.

Pretty soon we’ll have a world with a billion-plus publisher/editor/creators and only focusing on the mass of content they create is probably missing the larger cultural impact of them all being this other thing that puts content out into the world.

February 8, 2010