Win A Ribbon In The Soapbox Derby

New to the bloatosphere? Listen to Joi Ito. Hell, listen to him no matter who you are, regardless of your Technorati ranking.

A number of people have asked me to help new bloggers by giving them advice. In retrospect, I was giving people very specific advice based on my personal style. I thought I’d share some of the tips.
1 – You’re probably stupid – Well, maybe not stupid, but at least ignorant. Often you are the last one to figure out that you’re not as smart as you think. Assume that someone will think you’re stupid and will kindly point this out in the comments. Preempt that by assuming you’re stupid and uninformed. In other words, be humble and don’t try to write something conclusively smart-sounding. Start a discussion where someone smarter than you can step in easily.
2 – You need help thinking – Focus on the parts that you can’t figure out. Ask people to help you think. Most of the people who comment on my blog are helping me think. In other words, don’t say, “Blah blah blah. I’m an authority. Now talk amongst yourselves while I go pat myself on the back.” Say, “Gee, I’m not that smart, but here’s something interesting I’m noodling on. I’ve gotten this far on these pieces. Help me out here… someone?”

About David Burn

Co-founder and editor of AdPulp. I wrote my first ad for a political candidate when I was 17 years old. She won her race and I felt the seductive power of advertising for the first time. I worked for seven agencies in five states before launching my own practice in 2009. Today, I am head of brand strategy and creative at Bonehook in Portland, Oregon.


  1. Oh, thank you. Now I don’t feel so bad about being stupid. I think collaboration is a beautiful thing and two minds are better than one. Thank you most of all for helping me not feel so gosh darn dumb. I definitely need help thinking.