The blog is dead; long live the blog

Hugh Macleod says that blogs may be considered [by some media pundits] as a dying form of expression, with Twitter, Facebook, Digg and other micro formats on the rise, but for some people, blogs are still a powerful medium:

So that’s why I have a blog, I suppose. I like the control. I write something, I post it, it gets read, hopefully good things happen as a result, somewhere on this small blue planet of ours. Unlike a book or a movie or a TV commercial, there’s no waiting around for somebody else to greenlight it. The only light is the greenlight.

A blog can be the primary marketing tool of the free-agent or micro-business. It is cheap, simple and can have a far reach. My blog is the only time and money I spend that could be defined as “marketing”. I don’t pay for advertising, I don’t pay to get a speaking gig and I don’t even hang up a sign (not really necessary in Sackville).

This blog, started in February 2004, now has +1,000 posts and +2,000 comments.

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Depending on which statistics software I use, I get somewhere between 5,000 and 30,000 actual visitors per month, which doesn’t include anyone reading my posts in an RSS aggregator or all the bots and stuff. That is more reach than I could possibly have purchased in advertising. Like Hugh, I really appreciate the fact that I can publish something immediately, or even time-delayed, without waiting for permission, approval or the presses to start.

Vive le blogue libre!

4 Responses to “The blog is dead; long live the blog”

  1. Daniel Lemire

    Comparing blogging with twitter and facebook is insulting, I think. Nothing wrong with having a facebook profile, but can you compare the craft of sustaining a blog, and getting your reader interested in what you have to say, with managing a facebook profile? I think not.

    I think that some form of blogging has died. The blogs-are-cool thing is dead. The I-blog-to-stay-in-touch thing is dead.

    But blogging as an intellectual activity? I think we have only seen the tip of the iceberg. I think blogging has still a long to go. People will find better ways to blog. They will find better ways to network the blogs.

    BTW, I started a bit after you, and I have the same stats. I have over 1000 posts, and something like 1200 comments. So you are not alone!

    Reply
  2. Jacques

    I agree with Daniel. Also, classroom blogging is just getting off the ground and already, we are witnessing great things (read : learning, not profiling)from students’s blogs.. Not convinced? Go to http://cahm.elg.ca/ for an example of blogs for students/teachers/school in a K-8 setting (c’est en français) in NB. Others to follow…

    Personnally, writing in my blog is an exutory activity; I’m not there to count the number of comments left, that’s not the point. Also, when going through other regular blogs I read from my bloglines aggregator (including Harold’s blog), that’s where I connect, I reflect, I get those “ah-hah!” moments. It’s like an extension of my brain, where I can then sit back and reflect on what I’ve just read, thus building some sense on new (and old) ideas, deeper understanding, etc.

    I would conclude by saying that blogs go hand-in hand with an RSS aggregator… Saves time and helps zero-in on key interests, while also making new connections to new people/ideas/stuff.

    Vivement, vive le blogue!

    Reply
  3. Lisa

    I would say that as a regular user of twitter, digg, facebook, etc. that they are just another medium to give access to/promote the blog. What I do think twitter may have changed is the comment/interaction aspect. Someone twitters a link to their blog post. People click it, read the post and then respond via twitter, rather than leaving a comment on the blog. This however creates more discussion as those following that person via twitter, then click on the link as they are curious what the discussion is about. So, no I don’t think the blog is dead.

    Reply

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