The Naked Vlogger Experiment

Greetings! Welcome to the Naked Vlogger Experiment. It's wild, it's insane, it's... a stupid psychology experiment.

Sorry folks, there's nothing to look at. But by clicking on the ridiculous headline you've already contributed to an experiment that will add some zest to the ever-expanding deaf blogosphere.

Bear with me, I can explain. And, let the record show that my wife shook her head in disgust when I showed her the title of this article. Yes, Drolz Uncensored was nearly censored by Mrs. Drolz. But stick around -- you'll see what I'm up to very soon.

You can blame this idea on the recent Vlogging/Blogging conference at Gallaudet University.

No, I wasn't there. I really wish I was. Next year, maybe. But I did get to see a good portion of the proceedings on the streaming webcast. I know it's only vlogging and blogging, but to me it was like watching the Academy Awards. So I got my popcorn and enjoyed as much of the show as I possibly could.

Near the end of the day there was a neat panel on the future of vlogging/blogging. Pardon me for not being able to remember exactly who said what (it was a loooooong day over there, believe me). I do know that Jared Evans and Tayler Mayer, among others, mentioned the proliferation of deaf blogs and vlogs around the time the 2006 Gallaudet protest started gathering steam.

I really do believe that the Gallaudet protest gave birth to a new era in the deaf blogosphere. It had a tremendous impact. In fact, Jay Krieger hit the nail on the head when he talks about critical mass in his vlog. (Note: you can also blame Jay for my eccentric literary style. When I was a kid, I used to borrow books from him. Mostly mystery stories, but there were a few MAD Magazines here and there. Thanks, Jay. Keep up the good work with your vlog -- it rocks.)

However, something else is now happening. Yes, the deaf blogosphere exploded during the Gallaudet protest -- but now that things have settled down, what are we going to do now? It's becoming a case of so many bloggers, so few hot topics. What can we do before we sink into a Britney Spears hellhole where divas shaving their heads is suddenly big news?

If memory serves me correct, I think it was Shane Feldman who addressed this issue (somebody correct me if I'm wrong). It was mentioned that in the future, most likely you'll see deaf bloggers/vloggers branching off to become "specialists." You'll see one deaf blogger/vlogger exclusively covering ASL linguistics, another one covering Deaf Poker tournaments, another one covering crazed celebrities who shave their heads, and so on.

This makes sense, it really does. In order to keep the deaf blogosphere from turning into a big, steaming heap of blog soup, we need to expand our knowledge, sharpen our skills, and learn how to effectively connect with our readers.

And this is where the Naked Vlogger Experiment comes in.

Oh, for Pete's sake, calm down! No one's getting naked here.

The Naked Vlogger Experiment has nothing to do with clothes (or lack thereof). Instead, it serves to emphasize the importance of another critical skill bloggers and vloggers need in the expanding deaf blogosphere: The Art of Writing Catchy Headlines.

That's right. I've got a bet going with my disapproving wife that a catchy headline with a so-so article will actually do better than a well-written piece with a bland title. Yes, I'm counting on the phrase "Naked Vlogger" pulling in more readers than anything I've done before. This is definitely not my best article -- it's 12:01 a.m. and I'm rambling. But I have faith in the Power of Naked. I'm counting hits and will keep you posted.

But seriously, folks, writing headlines is an art form. I have a feeling that with so many new blogs and vlogs, most of us will evolve into skilled headline writers. We're going to have to be more concise, more catchy, more attention-grabbing, and in some cases, tantalizing. It's going to be fun.

All right, that's enough of that. It's past my bedtime. I'll be back next week with my latest article: