the daily column

Nobody’s Blogging

At least, not like they used to. Dan Cederholm caught the mood rather succinctly:

Like anyone who used to blog with frequency pre-2005, I’d like to post here more often — not just to fill up bits and bytes, but to write again. Remember when blogs were more casual and conversational? Before a post’s purpose was to grab search engine clicks or to promise “99 Answers to Your Problem That We’re Telling You You’re Having”. Yeah. I’d like to get back to that here.

Looking around at the blogs on and formerly on my blogroll, those which are still around mostly lie fallow, updated sheepishly every few months. There’s a few who are still going strong – Dooce, Kottke and the like – but they were a different part of the internet experience to begin with. Few who once posted on a regular basis do so any more, and the list of inactive sites has grown over the months to include former favourite sites.

And here I was thinking what sapped the conversation for me was just a change in lifestyle…

5 replies on “Nobody’s Blogging”

I still write when the mood strikes me… but I did start following the twitter (or rather fb status updates). It seems like more of a group chat interface to me, whereas *ahem* true blogging is more about reflection and self-expression. That’s how I do it anyway, not that there’s any one right way.

In my circles the peak in blogging occurred sometime between 2000-2004, which corresponds to when I was in high school… university, not so much. I don’t know whether it’s because “emo” teenagers like to have blogs where they can talk about how much their life sucks and find other ways to get attention, or if it reflected a trend consistent with all age groups. As for non-personal (news / topic-oriented) blogs I still find a lot of those around.

Anyway, my thoughts.

Basically, my kind of blog is the kind I would be writing even if no one was reading. A personal journal and sketchpad. Sometimes life is too busy / you don’t feel like writing – I don’t really think there’s anything wrong with that. My 2D art sketch book and my guitar is in the same condition.

I’ll stop spamming your comments now. :P

Well you’ve definitely caught that mood! I’m almost tempted to remove you from my rss :P

But with the invent of facebook + twitter, every single thought is already broadcasted and not enough is stored up for a good blogpost!

Here’s hoping you’ll do better with this blog :P

kahiti: my group of friends had roughly that same peak period of personal blogging, 2001 – 2005, though we went from late high-school through to the end of uni. It seemed to be an emergent trend then, whereas now the news and topic specific ones tend to dominate.

I know for me the shift from personal, reflective blogging to something much less so happened around the time I started working – I found myself conscious of the fact that this was a public space, and while I held to an idealism that I wanted to keep it open rather than work in a closed ecosystem, I think I lost the chance there to keep it going as a personal thing. While I initially wrote as if no-one was reading, once in uni I was approached by a (relative) stranger who had read it and wanted to talk about a post, which came as somewhat of a shock. After that, I suddenly became very conscious of who the potential audience could be.

I’d like very much to be able to talk more, but some things I would talk about previously feel trivial, for which there is facebook & twitter naturally, and for others it is somewhat along the lines of something you’d discuss with friends alone, which again ties back to the closed-vs-open. I’m half tempted to start an anonymous blog somewhere just to vent :)

Kelson: I don’t do FB much anymore, and twitter is only good for one line – times when there are longer ideas, but they fail some other filters I have between the point of conceptualising and the point of hitting publish…

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