Second Wave Blogging
Time for a bold prediction: Blogging will make a comeback in 2010. Well, a comeback of sorts; perhaps a resurgence, or maybe a second wave. Blogging won’t return to where it was, a few years ago, before the explosion of social media. The dynamics have changed. For some, Twitter ate their blog, for many of […]
Time for a bold prediction: Blogging will make a comeback in 2010.
Well, a comeback of sorts; perhaps a resurgence, or maybe a second wave. Blogging won’t return to where it was, a few years ago, before the explosion of social media. The dynamics have changed. For some, Twitter ate their blog, for many of the rest, the rythmn of checking in on people’s blogs is broken,
“No, I’m not keeping up with your blog. Like a good friend said to me a couple of years ago, “Man, I don’t even have time to read the blogs of my good friends anymore.” Ditto with me. Heck, it’s hard enough keeping up with my good friends’ Twitter streams.”
In fact, Hugh’s thoughts on the state of the blogosphere today hold a key for the future. Creating good blog content is hard, which is why so many people have left the platform – unable to sustain the demand for content or find an audience for their writing.
However, Twitter and Facebook are very limited vehicles for holding content – that is not their strength.
If you have creative output, you need a place to host it, explain it and maybe invite comment on it. On that level blogging still makes sense. Content-specific sites, like Flickr (photos) and Soundcloud (music) are great hosts but, by design, limited in scope. If you have a story to tell, about your life, or work or product, a sustained story, then blogging is still a compelling platform.
Because, as I’ve always said, blogging is ultimately all about self-publishing.
But, blogging is not for everyone – this drive is not part of everyone’s personality. Blogging is a public art and in a way social media has cleared the path for it to become more elite. I’m saving some thoughts on the pros and cons of this for later posts. But, for now, I wanted to focus on two ways I see blogging changing fast.
Back in 02-05, comments were the fuel that drove a lot of bloggers. Today, comment-traffic is way down and I don’t see this trend being reversed anytime soon.
Reflecting on the death of blog comments, Binary Bonsai wrote,
“Twitter killed a lot of blogs, and I’m beginning to think that it’s killed even more comments. I love Twitter, but I do miss the old days of the blogosphere, back when blogs where as common as opinions (I was traversing my archives earlier; it was like visiting a graveyard, with URLs for headstones). Back when even a half-assed entry would garner comments from near and far, and people would link to each other and the sense of community was in-between people and their writing, rather than in-between 140-character quips.
Those days are gone, and a new batch have arrived, where if I write that I’m eating a strawberry pie on Facebook, it’ll get more replies than if I dig up a super-rare interview with George Lucas and write about it on my blog… What’s a man to do?”
There appear to be no elegant solutions for pulling comments into blogs from other platforms and creating active, cross-platform conversations. Maybe this will change in the future, but for now, as bloggers, we should just focus on our content and accept that comments in the old sense, are a gift when they come.
Part of why I am bullish about blogs, is because I’m bullish about the iPad and the future of tablet computers. Facebook and Twitter got a huge shot in the arm from advanced mobile phone technology.
Portability sparked the growth in social media, because it allowed us to post from anywhere and 140 characters doesn’t feel like much of a limitation when writing from a phone. In an interesting reversal of trend, the tablet provides portability but the ability to handle the richer and deeper content that blogs require.
There you have it – in 2010 blogs will rise again, without comments and fuelled by tablets like the iPad.