I managed to read Adam Kirsch's denigration of book bloggers yesterday without it bothering me in the slightest (especially since delightful responses to the article came fast and furiously), but I found myself taken back this afternoon when I stumbled across Michael Rogers' BEA journal from earlier in the month.
He attended a bloggers panel moderated by Bud Parr that included "legitimate reviewers" --Anne Fernald, James Marcus, Lizzie Skurnick--but instead of therefore concluding that the battle between bloggers and print reviewers was downright silly, he deliberately perpetuated it by saying the following:
Those folks aren't the people causing concern. It's others going by the handle of Book Girl, or Book Dog, or Bookasaurus, etc., basically book nerds with no chops who pound away on their PCs while their 18 cats prance in the background. Those are the people I wanted to see defending their legitimacy. . .
Eighteen cats. Ouch. It's sad that an editor for Library Journal holds that much contempt for book lovers. And it's particularly sad that an editor doesn't communicate well enough to get across just who it is who's supposed be concerned that such inconsequential people are writing about the books they read and having conversations about them and if these concerns are the least bit legitimate in the first place. Claiming you're for "anything and everything that promotes books and reading" after making fun of readers isn't awfully smart.
For the record, Mr. Rogers, I have only three cats. And if our paths should happen to cross next week at the ALA conference, count on me, instead of stopping to defend my own legitimacy, to mutter "Bastard" in your direction and to keep on moving.