This piece in the SMH details some of the reasons why the breadth of blogging has reduced in recent times. I basically agree with the reasons it outlines, not least because it goes to some of the same reasons I’ve expressed on this site previously. Ironically, I read the SMH piece because it was linked to in the first post on a new blog by Annabel Crabb, which quite reasonably asked if starting a blog now was ‘too late’. I suppose the short answer is it’s never too late to do that (or anything else) if it works for you.
Writing blog posts on blogs about blogging was already tiresome many years ago (even though I’m doing it again now and I first did it from pretty much my first post on this regularly re-transformed blog over 7 years ago). Given all that’s happened to me in my life since then, this blog – far less frequently visited and tended as it is – is in someways more valid to my reality now than some deeply held understandings/assumptions I had less than 12 months ago.
Anyway, I guess the fact this the first thing I’ve posted on this blog in over a month – by far the longest gap I’ve had in the 7+ years I’ve being writing things here – speaks for itself. Perhaps the main reason why I decided to explore blogging in the first place was because of the potential for direct feedback and conversation from others within the general public. Whilst I appreciate those who take the time to comment on the posts I still occasionally do on this blog (although some of those comments still seem to bare little relation to what I have written or the issues I’ve raised in those posts), Facebook (and to a lesser extent Twitter) tends to provide much richer, more instantaneous comment threads from a wider range of people in response to links or comments which take me 20 words and 30 seconds to write. And it’s the genuine conversation, explanation, reflection and insight which I’ve always felt was the most potentially valuable and interesting aspects of blogging.
Similarly, these days I rarely read, let alone comment on, most of the key blogs I used to regularly read even a year ago (which reminds me, I must update/delete my ‘blogroll’. A big reason why I used to read many of those blogs was because they provided very valuable links to many interesting stories and pieces of information. I expect most of them still do, but nowdays I can see most of such links much quicker through Twitter or Facebook, and often also see comment threads there which are also at least as good.
Despite all that, I don’t think we’re seeing the death of the blog by any means. I think it’s just another stage in the evolution. My blog started out trying to be some sort of diary and has gone through a number of iterations since then. Some of those changes have been due to how my life has changed and some of them have been due to alternative platforms that have subsequently appeared which have enabled different ways for me (and everyone else) to interact.
And I end this by recommending you read and follow (and comment at) Annabel Crabb’s blog – she is still amongst the most reasonable and rational of the many writers within the federal parliamentary press gallery.