This is what Java was mulling over almost immediately after we posted the piece about a panel discussion scheduled at the Galle Literary Festival on whether Bloggers can be taken seriously. Checking out the Festival schedule at Bareass Boulevard this morning we were struck by the variety of subjects and the impressive list of well-known authors, journalists and others who are involved in the panel discussions and other assorted events planned for the duration of the Festival. And from what I understood from Zaney, who is very much a guiding force of the event, tickets are going fast, there is a dearth of accommodation in and around Galle, and it all looks very promising for all concerned.

The guest authors are an impressive bunch that includes Gore Vidal, Vikram Seth, Alexander McCall Smith, Yasmine Gunaratne and Shyam Selvadurai among other well known writers, so the discussions and debates should be more than a little interesting. The panel discussions should also be appealing, as interesting and articulate individuals have been selected to analyse and elucidate on their areas of expertise. So it looks like the sessions will be well attended and from the choice of subjects selected for discussion, it does appear that interesting interactions could result.

But back to that ‘serious’ aspect: Can the panels be taken seriously? Well, I guess that would depend entirely on the quality of individuals that are on the respective panels. Pretty much like the blogger scene? The difference here, though, is that some selective process was used to determine the panelists and care must have been given to ensure that the desired quality was achieved. In view of this, can we safely assume that the panels can be taken ‘seriously’?

Shuurre maan, all dem folk buyin up dose tickets an sheet be wantin to check out dat scene, meet up wit som of dere favorite authors, get into dem debates and get dere asses seeriass bout dis number. An den dere be dose soschul events were dey be lookin to have som fun an sturff wit dem literary groupies hangin aroun getting into da experience. Shuurre dey be takin dis sheet seeriass. Seeriass fun too, fo som.

Have to admit, I do agree with Java. The whole thing looks like a very good idea, and what’s more, is creating a niche for itself and putting Galle on the ‘Literary Festival’ map of the Asian (and some say ‘World’) literary scene in the bargain.

In conclusion then, it does look that we can take those panels seriously. What do you think?