The word has slowly leaked out across the time-ravaged blogosphere: Blog pioneer and deep-thinker Steven Den Beste is dead.
Back in the day, his USS Clueless was one of my go-to blogs for opinion and information. In fact, back in 2005 I credited him and Richard Fernandez of the Belmont Club/PJ Media as role models for blogging.
That was almost 12 years ago and the internet has changed quite a bit.
There are a few of the old crew still out there – the hated Instapundit (which is now a group blog and part of the PJ Media consortium), Ace of Spades and James Lileks.
Some of those I used to read flipped out (such as Andrew Sullivan), while others just sort of disappeared. I’ve had to cull the blog roll from time to time because of that.
When Den Beste decided to give himself over to blogging about anime, I stopped following him. It’s not a topic that interests me but as his health declined, he needed an escape and that provided it.
In a way, he epitomized what blogging promised to so many others: If you had something worth saying, people would swarm to read you. In the end, the burden of that fame was too much for him.
The world is poorer without his clarity of thought and well-crafted prose. Rest in Peace.