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Tuesday, April 25, 2006

The Blogosphere: Waxing or Waning?

For anyone who has ever written about blogging or blogs, it is apparent that blogging . . . almost . . . doesn't . . . exist: spell check catches it and Word flags it in red like a disease. That is at least moderately distrubing for those of us who actively blog and see blogging as a relevant and impactful means of communication and expression. An article I read the other day, however, suggests that blogging is far from what Word and spell check suggest of it. CNNMoney picks blogging as one of "7 trendy new jobs." The article describes "Blog editor" as an "in-vogue" job. It states:
I blog, you blog, we all blog apparently, judging from the proliferation of blogs in the past two years. The success of influential ones like Wonkette.com has companies wanting in on the perceived edginess of the blogosphere.

"Blogging" is not only starting to creep into people's job descriptions, but recruiters are starting to see blog-related job listings.

One on Monster.com seeks a blog editor "to manage and moderate blogs for clients and to write for the company blog on PR and new media topics."
This is good news for those of us entering the job market, or maybe those just seeking a change of professional scenery. And, in my opinion, I'll take CNNMoney over Word any day.

But, then there is the downside. While CNNMoney reports the explosive growth and recognition of blogging, not just as a hobby, but by the professional community (suggesting blogging's further entrenchment in our culture), the blog of clinicalcases.org cites that a number of prominent bloggers are bowing out of the blogging world due to "fatigue." In the post, one blogger is described to think:
Blogging has become too much of a burden.
The post goes on to say that:
The RSS inventor and blog pioneer Dave Winer also wrote that he plans to stop blogging to free up time and become less of a public figure.
This is troubling to a society that stands to gain so much from intelligent and consistent bloggers as well as a community of bloggers that depends on one another to develop and sustain the conversational nature that characterizes the blogging world.

In the article, Family Medicine Notes blogger, Jacob, describes:
"...blogging has matured, and so has medical blogging. Back in 1999 and 2000, there were a handful of medical bloggers (literally!) and we all had a bit of a role in educating each other and the world about what is is that physicians do, think, read, etc. [. . .] But there's lots of that now. Hundreds (thousands?) of medlical bloggers are posting daily and - frankly - I don't think the Internet needs me anymore..."
Is this true? Are bloggers leaving because they feel they are no longer impactful? Is it true that the sheer number of people online and people blogging now waters down the quality of information and makes it such that it's harder to find quality? It seems feasible. It's the law of supply and demand. Is the supply of bloggers outgrowing the demand for blogs and posts by blog readers? The internet's vast nature seems to be both a blessing and a curse. It allows limitless people to contribute, but, as a Google search demonstrates, it also makes it harder to sift through all the non-expert commentators to find good information (or even just an intelligent blog you like). Perhaps we could use a system like professional journals in which blogs are rated or approved to ensure a reader of the quality of the content.

Blogging is growing, but will it soon be shrinking? Or, will it grow in quantity at the cost of quality? It's being recognized in the professional world, but "professional" bloggers seem to be abandoning it.

What does all this mean for our future as bloggers? Is it possible we've gone from too few voices to too many?

*Crossposted at: Look to the Sky

1 Comments:

At Wed Apr 26, 07:20:00 PM, Blogger Nicole said...

Since this post is generating so many comments . . . I found another blogger who posted on this topic (http://mediabysistrunk.blogspot.com/2006/04/blogging-enters-new-frontier-for-some.html).

 

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