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Eurovision 2009: And the point of blogging about the Eurovision is?

May 5, 2009

I started following @ewanspence on Twitter today. An old university pal did alert me to Mr Spence’s professed love of the contest way back in January. What I didn’t tell her at the time was that I had followed him before but bowed out gracefully when he started banging on about politics. I so don’t get politics. It’s not my thing. 

No, my thing is far more focussed on entertainment. My mind gets concentrated on Eurovision. Well, if I’m being really honest (and really, why wouldn’t I be? I know you’re probably a handful of steps ahead of me anyway, so I might as well be honest) my obsession is Eurovision. For a few weeks every year, I bore my partner, my cats, my parents and my work colleagues to tears about the Eurovision. It’s like the holy grail. It’s like the thing I can’t miss. And, as a result, I’m like the thing that wouldn’t shut up when Eurovision is in the offing. . 

I’ll hold my hands up and confess that following @ewanspence seemed like the right thing to do at the time. It’s not like I haven’t got enough to do at work already, but I have kept a careful eye on how the Eurovision has been embraced by the Twitter community. In so doing I’ve strived to make new friends with people who share my passion with the contest. In actual fact, I’ve also strived to reach new clumps of people on the internet who may just possibly be interested in my witterings at this special time of year. Read between the lines people, this blogging and twittering lark is a highly competitive market. 

The thing about @ewanspence is that he does have quite a lot of followers. He’s what this particular small-time blogger might refer to as a “blogging heavyweight”. Seemingly everyone knows that @ewanspence is your Eurovision man. And, inevitably being the bitter old queen short of inspiration for a daily blog, I couldn’t help but use him as the focus of this particular posting. Being in contact with such a heavyweight, what the hell was I bothering with committing endless word counts of mindless drivel about an inconsequential TV show when there was someone else who was doing it already and – no doubt – doing it far more successfully. 

The inevitable questioning went a stage further when I reminded myself about the subject material. Eurovision is – let’s be absolutely clear about this – nothing more than a series of 3 minute acts presented by a series of performers the vast majority of viewers across Europe have absolutely no idea about. Everyone dismisses it and yet seemingly everyone confesses to watching it. 

More than that, in recent years, increasing numbers of people have written about Eurovision. Large numbers of people go out to the various host cities to “cover” the event. People make videos. @ewanspence has made a video “series”. Some other twerp has done the same. If all these people are doing stuff, who the bloody hell is actually consuming it all? Are there really that many people around who care THAT much about the Eurovision they’re prepared to devote exactly the same amount of time reading about the damn thing as bloggers commit to writing about it?

And, as you may possibly ask, if you’re saying that Jon, why exactly are you doing it now?

In case you’re interested, let me let you into a little secret about this bizarre little TV event we all know we’ll throw eggs at on the night of Saturday 16 May and empty beer bottles at the following Sunday.

Those who are obsessed by it want to feel a part of it. That is why there are so many people writing about it and so many commenting about it. That’s why there are so many engaging in conversations about it too. It’s the most wonderful thing in that offers innocuous subject matter enabling nearly everyone to formulate an opinion on it regardless of their interest in music, tv or history. For those who see an opportunity for pursuing their lifelong dreams, it’s also something which consumes all of their time, all of their energies and risks damaging the very things they hold most dear. Tweet me if you would like further evidence of this. 

Quite why something so ridiculous as a 55 year old TV programme inspires so many people to do what they do creatively is, frankly, beyond me. Maybe I’ll have the answer to that question next year. 

Oh yes. I’ll be blogging next year. I’ll also be blogging tomorrow, so be sure to bookmark the homepage.

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One Comment
  1. Great and accurate comment, allow me the pleasure of a reply.

    I’ll let you into a secret as well, just to be fair. I will actually make money from Eurovision this year. As a freelance writer, I’ll be heading out to Moscow and the Contest this Saturday for the week leading up to the final on May 16th. I’ll be working on behalf of a number of publications in the UK – ones with editors and required angles and all the trappings of journalism.

    You are right that I’m a fan as well, and that drives some of the content on my blog, but is there a viewpoint that the blogs and Twitters of this world are the digital equivalent of the office water cooler? I would say yes.

    On the Beginners Videos, and previous coverage that you graciously has me marked out as ‘the go to man form Eurovision’ it serves two purposes. I know a lot of my friends who read the blog, and those who follow me on Twitter, are either not sold on Eurovision, or are American and can’t cope with something bigger than the Superbowl – the videos are partly for them.

    They, and all the coverage of this and other events, also are a living CV. Write about Eurovision, get noticed (actually more like make sure you get noticed by the right people), talk to the Editors about what you can deliver, work with them on what you’ll produce for their publication… and so on.

    All I can say is that the work I ut into Eurovision gives me a return that works for me.

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