Derek Draper is a New Labour apparatchik who has recently launched a pro-Labour blog, LabourList. He’s also recently had an Internet spat with Tim Ireland, and written a comment on Dizzy Thinks, which Dizzy has replied to.
From Draper’s statements I conclude that he’s an arrogant opinionated bastard who thinks other bloggers are beneath him. But don’t take my word for it, here’s Draper’s own words:
there are 17 people who count. And to say I am intimate with every one of them is the understatement of the century
i’m trying to build a popular website here, not get stuck in a geeks ghetto
ARE YOU SO NAIVE THAT YOU THINK I/WE WILL BE ABLE TO ANSWER HUNDREDS OF COMMENTS? YOU MAY GET 0, 11, 8 and 2 (YOUR LAST FOUR POSTS) WE GET HUNDREDS EVERY DAY. WE ARE BUILDING IS A CONVERSATION AMONG A COMMUNITY NOT A BI-LATERAL SERIES OF DISCUSSIONS WITH SELF-IMPORTANT BLOGGERS
ONCE AGAIN, MASS MEDIA VS GEEK GHETTO
i don’t care what you put on your blog, haven’t you realised that?
Boy, the British blogosphere! […] Never have I experienced such a self-important, self-regarding, self-obsessed group in my life. No wonder the British Blogosphere is such a tiny, tiny, tiny ghetto. Don’t any of you realise that I don’t care what you think? Why would I? Why should I? LabourList is designed (wait for it) for real people. We are aiming at hundreds of thousands of Labour-minded people who want to partake of politics online, almost all of them for the first time.
People who aren’t “bloggers”, don’t know what “wordpress” is, do not know and will never, ever know who Tom Ireland [sic] or Dizzy or any of you are. I am aiming for the mass market where, to all intents and purposes you all don’t exist. While you are all poring over what I am doing because it is 100 times more interesting than any of your own ultra-minority antics, I will be building an online community of Labour-minded people – thousands of them.
you [bloggers] are all going to look very silly
So there you have it. We bloggers are “very silly” and in a “geeks ghetto”. Draper is “100 times” better than us. Of course, it’s not surprising he thinks like that — in Draperworld, there are only 17 people in the country who matter, and if you’re not one of those 17, Draper think’s you’re scum.
Draper is wrong, incidently. There isn’t a great number of people who want to read about and discuss politics on the Internet, but who aren’t interested in the current outlets for doing so. There are a great variety of news websites and political blogs already, so anyone interested in politics will already be about to find lots of outlets that’re to their taste. And if Draper thinks alienating the entire UK political blogging community will help him, he’s a fool.
I’ll end with a prediction: if Draper’s LabourList evolves into a Stalinesque on-message echo chamber for people who want to duckspeak the party line, it will die a death. But what do I know? I’m just a geek who should crawl back into my ghetto, isn’t that right Mr Intimate-With-All-The-People-Who-Count?