I would like to give a huge shout out of thanks to my readers for voting for me in the 2008 American Wine Blog Awards!
I have a great deal of respect for what Tom Wark is doing over at his Fermentation blog, especially his continued fight against monopolized wine shipping – there’s a passion that we both share!
Having said all that – I don’t think I’m eligible to receive any of the 2008 American Wine Blog Awards. According to Tom’s blog:
“Any wine blog in existence between January 1, 2007 and the end of January 2008, that has produced at least 52 posts during that time and is written in English is eligible to be nominated...”
Technically, 1WineDude.com has been around almost that long, but not quite – since February 2007. And while the total number of posts in that time is close, it’s not quite 52. So it looks like I’m out on both counts.
Now, I can’t stop you from voting for / nominating me (and believe me, Dude appreciates the love – and the free publicity!), but I certainly hope I don’t discourage you from voting altogether even if I’m not in the running…
That’s because these awards are pretty much meaningless without your voices! Otherwise, it’s just a group of bloggers voting for / nominating each other, and personally I don’t want to write just for other bloggers (as nice and interesting as they are) – I’m doing this to reach everyday people who want to increase the fun in their lives by appreciating the world’s greatest beverage more.
So – get out there and vote. Personally, I’ve voted for Vinography.com for Best Wine Blog and Best Wine Blog Writing – for me, Alder (the site’s author) has set the standard in overall quality that I try to emulate on a daily basis (though certainly our styles are very, very different). I suppose you can call this my official endorsement of Vinography for the 2008 American Wine Blog Awards. You’re welcome, Alder! ;-)
The categories for 2008:
Now go out there and ROCK THE VOTE!
Whenever I’m asked about Wine 2.0, the conversation usually goes something like this:
“Hey Dude – what exactly is Wine 2.0 anyways? Is that, like, some future technology where wine will get instantly zapped into my glass, like on Star Trek? ‘Cause that would, like, seriously rule.”
Uh… not quite. I’ve found this a confusing topic as well, and I’m even a tech-savvy nerd-type. After all, it’s a bit of an amorphous term, but even the casual wine geek will have noticed the term cropping up on the web. It must be important if everyone’s talkin’ about it, right? Some wine blogs even have their own sections devoted to it.
So what is this Wine 2.0 stuff all about?…
Wine 2.0 is basically just the concepts of Web 2.0 applied to the world of wine. And it’s starting to turn that world on its head (er, cork)!
“Power To The People – Right On!”
Wine 2.0 might best be described as “Power to the People.”
Web 2.0 is about the migration of publishing and social network out of the hands of a (relatively) few controlled powers and into the hands of ordinary folks. Think about what blogs, social networking websites (like MySpace), and instant communication /chat tools (like Twitter) have done in recent years: they’ve opened up the world of publishing to literally millions upon millions of people, all sharing ideas, offering opinions, and influencing each other’s decisions.
What we are now seeing in the wine world is that wine reviews, and wine topics in general, are no longer just the territory of a few elite publishers of books, magazines and websites. They are also now part of a huge global community of hundreds of people, interacting in a very big online wine conversation.
Another way to look at it is that any talentless dimwit with a PC, an Internet connection, and an under-developed wine palate can set up an opinionated blog, MySpace page, twitter account, on-line affiliate store, merchandising page, and write & sell media like books online in practically no time at all.
Uh… wait a minute… on second thought, ignore that last paragraph!!!
Anyway, the Wine 2.0 phenomenon is starting to impact winemakers, who are realizing the power shift that is taking place (and are starting to send wines to bloggers for reviews, for example). You can contribute to this influential conversation – by blogging, “twittering,” and generally just visiting and commenting on wine websites that you enjoy. That’s the good news.
The bad news? Wine 2.0 is confusing as hell and the online marketplace is as fragmented as a busted wine bottle. Every marketer and their sister wants in on Wine 2.0 and its huge potential customer base; and because social networking translates into big money, you will find that nearly every Wine 2.0 website has some requirement for you to create an account so that you can share wine reviews with friends.
Kind of like MySpace or Facebook, only drunker.
The trouble is that everyone wants to be the Facebook of Wine 2.0, so all of these websites have their own community. And they don’t talk to the other communities. For example: You wanna buy wine online? There’s Snooth, WineQ (my personal fave, since it operates a bit like Netflix), and WineZap. Wanna share some wine reviews? Well, you’ll need to pick from about a dozen websites, including CellarTracker, Cork’d, Wineography, Vino, GrapeFoot, Wine Commune, OpenBottles, BottleTalk, Vinorati, Adegga… are you going insane yet?
Perhaps someday, someone will smarten up and just create a Facebook widget application that interfaces to one of the better wine sales websites and – voilà – you’ve got your social networking and your wine sales without having to exhaust the poor wine consumer with dozens of different online Wine 2.0 communities.
OK, I gotta go call one of the big wigs at WineQ and offer them my idea for $10K…
In the spirit of all things Wine 2.0-ish, I’ve opened up a second Twitter feed that will feature my “mini” wine reviews (the reviews are mini – the wines are normal size). Stop by and Twitter me up!
Not too long ago (June of 2007, I believe), in what is probably the coolest take on Blogosphere wine reviews since the inception of Wine Blogging Wednesday, Chateau Petrogasm was born.
If you’re at all interested in the visual arts, have even a small semblance of a sense of humor, and enjoy imaginative takes on the varied impressions that wine can have on different palates (& I hope this includes all of you Dude-O-Philes out there!), then you really need to check out the Chateau immediately. Or better yet, subscribe to their feed.
I recently submitted my first humble contribution, which you can check out here (thanks for the post, Ben!).
Calling All Wine Bloggers!
As some of you may know, I’m currently in the midst of a multi-part blog post detailing my experiences and recommendations of how wine consumers can ‘up their Wine IQ’. The first of these posts focused on Reading About Wine, and listed books and references that I have found the most helpful through the years in increasing my own knowledge about wine. Subsequent posts will tackle experience-building through Tasting, and finally I will interview a local winemaker about How the Boldest of wine lovers can work their way into the wine industry.
I’d like to extend this series to include input from YOU, the wine blogging community, on your own experiences and advice for others wishing to increase their wine knowledge.…
I am pretty sure that the wine blogging world, and wine blog readers everywhere, would appreciate having the thoughts of experienced tasters, distributors, buyers, sellers, winemakers, critics, and passionate wine lovers on the joys and trials of life-long devotion to our favorite beverage.
So – if you’re interested in contributing, please send me a link to a post of your thoughts and experiences on building wine knowledge.
This could be a link to a similarly-themed article that you’ve posted in the past, or a brand new post on your Blog. Either way, send me the link – either via comment to this post, or via email to twowinedudes (at) yahoo (dot) com – and I will summarize in a post, linking to all of your indvidual posts from here. (If you don’t have a Blog but would like to contribute, I will publish your input in the post).
I’m a firm believer that nothing ever really gets done without having some kind of target date. So please send your input to me by December 31st, and I will post the results during the first week of the new year.
Thanks for your time, attention, and (in advance) thanks for helping the wine consumers of the world!
-Joe (the 1WineDude)