When I see a La Quinta, I have been conditioned to look for a Denny’s. When I see Batman, I know Robin is nearby. And when I see a ridiculous post by Dave Winer, I know a smack-down by Rogers Cadenhead will soon follow. Today was no exception.
I long ago made the journey from interested, to annoyed, back to interested and ultimately to apathetic about Dave, but this is just too good not to mention.
This time, Rogers puts a beat-down on Dave for disguising another self-embrace as a fatherly warning to Twitter about launching people who aren’t part of Dave’s inner circle into the Twitosphere via Twitter’s Suggested Users list. Oh, that and allegedly failing to mention that he previously did the same thing with Radio UserLand– one of the millions of things Dave apparently invented eons ago. I don’t think Thomas Edison got the run for the light bulb or the record player that Dave gets for whatever it was he did back then, but that’s another story.
I don’t know or particularly care whether or not someone got paid to put a former MTV veejay’s feed (you know the story is dated, since I don’t think MTV has played a music video this century) in the default Radio UserLand (whatever that is or was) subscriptions. But I am tremendously entertained by a couple of the things Dave said in his post.
I also find it interesting that Mike Arrington took the time to comment on Rogers’ post and remind everyone that Dave sent traffic to TechCrunch back in its infancy and that secret deals happen all the time. Mike’s attempt to defend Dave while reminding everyone else that they are above the contempt of commoners doesn’t strike me as all that helpful to Dave’s case.
When I first read Dave’s post, it was clear to me that Dave’s latent complaint is that he wasn’t on Twitter’s suggested users list. Oh, and that some little people supplanted some of his buddies who feel entitled to be at the top of the Twitter heap, even if they have to pay to get there. If that sounds familiar, it’s because these people guarded the blogosphere with the same zeal, until they abandoned it in a fit of Facebook/Twitter lust.
But the best part of Dave’s post is this glorious nugget:
Bottom-line: This isn’t the way the Internet works. The guys at Twitter should know this. I think they’re living in a bubble, and creating one at the same time. No one likes someone who pops the bubble while it’s still building. So be it. We need to get that power out of their hands, or they need to disclaim it.
For Dave, probably the least inclusive of the blogosphere insiders, to tell Twitter that this is not how it works and that Twitter needs to give up the power to control online influence may be the single most ironic (and hilarious) thing I have read in months.
Here’s a further irony. I actually agree that Twitter should not select and promote suggested users. It’s another form of the sort of gatekeeping that I have consistently criticized. But the need to disagree with the self-and-crony-serving way Dave makes his point is greater than the desire to agree with his manifest, if not latent, point. In other words, saying the right thing the wrong way is a sure way to convince no one.
I can’t tell if Dave believes all this crap or if he thinks people are so dumb or sycophantic they’ll just take whatever he says at face value.
Either way, it’s priceless.