The Woozle Effect

Taken from Winnie the Pooh, it’s when you go hunting for something and wind up thinking you’ve discovered something new when really just gone over the same area with the same flawed presumptions over and over again, even starting to think you’re gathering more and more evidence when you’ve really just been fooling yourself all along. I think there are a lot of Woozles in the world, but here’s a good real-world illustration of the problem.

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  • Elizabeth Reid

    Hey Dean?

    I’m not sure whether or not this is appropriate (this is, after all, your World) but I feel like I’ve got enough years in at DW for you to listen to me a little bit. So here goes. Advice worth exactly what was paid for it, etc.

    I’ve been around during a lot of different ‘phases’ of DW, and I’ve enjoyed most of them, even when I was deeply in disagreement with you. I think I could stick around and enjoy a MRA focus to this blog too. However, I feel like you could be doing better service for your cause by doing more writing of your own. Right now most of your MRA posts seem to consist of cryptic fragments which don’t mean much out of context, containing links to other blogs, many of which also assume a great deal of mutually understood context. As part of an ongoing conversation within the men’s rights community, these posts may be awesome, I don’t know. To someone who isn’t reading all of the other blogs you’re reading and absorbing all of the accompanying shared perspective, it’s kind of discouraging.

    Obviously, again, it’s your blog, you get to decide what to do with it. But I think you’d get a lot more play on your MRA posts if you actually wrote more. Give background, add commentary, etc. The posts that basically consist of “Here’s a thing!” seem more suited to Twitter than a full-scale blog. I’d be interested in hearing more about your new focus. I just want to hear it from YOU, I don’t want to have to become a full-time reader of MRA blogs to follow what you’re talking about.

  • I think it’s a fair criticism/request. I actually spend substantially more energy now over on AVfM than I do here because I’m not sure what I want this blog to be anymore. Politics still interests me but the partisan bitching is so fucking dreary it makes me want to shoot myself in the head and I seriously do not think I would care if both the Democratic and Republican parties both fell into a pit of lava at the national level. So I’ve been saving most of my MRA-related stuff for places like AVfM and posting “other stuff” here unless it seemed important (like the Erin Pizzey interview). My view with the Woozle thing is that it applies to a lot more than just one thing and might interest people.

    Still, maybe I need to retool. If I’m going to write about this stuff, I can write about it here as well. Possibly some introductory stuff is in order. I’ve been thinking about doing that anyway.

    So basically I could go two ways: no MRA-related materials at all unless it’s in-depth, OR, full barrel. I’m in full-barrel MRA/human rights mode these days, something I expect to last a few years at minimum. But where to begin, where to begin? So much of the audience here has changed or left, which I frankly don’t mind because I long ago tired of the acriomony, but… hmm. Hmm. Must think on it.

  • With appropriate “it’s your blog” disclaimers also, I agree with Elizabeth. I’m not averse to the MRA posts but I find them oddly disjointed, as if you are writing with the expectation that everyone reading is an MRA activist. I don’t think that you need to make a binary choice here – you can do what I do or what Ron does, focus your MRA (ie, your niche) blogging at the relevant content silo elsewhere and then judiciously link to it, with perhaps a summary or aside on why its important.

    I’m glad you have your MRA activism, and I think you’d do it more of a service if you used DW as a funnel rather than a dumping ground.

  • Good advice. I need to ponder it. It’s sort of odd, I was writing on many of these issues regularly from the very year this blog started, particularly in the areas of domestic violence and father’s rights. I mean, that’s -nothing- new and I’m often astonished people seem to think it is new. But there is a new intensity in that area.

    In the meanwhile, I’m wondering if I didn’t just link the wrong article on Woozles, because the Woozle concept applies to many many things.

  • Scott

    I have to disagree with Aziz and Elizabeth. All the posters here do posts that link to another blog that requires the reader to “do their homework” since the author of the post rarely fleshes it out completely.

    DW is a blog of diverse and varied ideas so if MRA doesn’t interest you enough to do some background reading you can just ignore it. I know I ignore many of the posts I have no interest in.

    And I like the MRA posts since understanding how society sees and treats men is the Civil Rights struggle of our times.