Personal Blogs – An Endangered Species?

This blog is not unique. There are plenty of self interested pseudo writers on the internet who obsess about their kids, their interests, and their neurotic pets. But not as many as there used to be. I have many friends who have started, and subsequently abandoned, blogs. Yeah, I’m looking at you, Carrie, Jackie, Kevin, and (gasp!) my own lovely wife, who has abandoned not one, but TWO blogs. And that’s just to name a few.

Now, this isn’t an indictment of former bloggers. Rather, I was just musing on what seems to be a decrease (at least amongst my friends) in their blogging habits. I’m thinking there is a combination of reasons:

  • A simple loss of interest
  • Increased concern about online privacy
  • The rise of other social networking mediums on the web like MySpace and Facebook
  • “Who the *@#&$*! has time to blog anymore? I’ve got kids. And a job. And a dog. And hobbies. Get a freaking LIFE you loser!”

While the other three reasons should not be discounted, I think that the third item probably carries the most weight. Why spend the time and effort to write a lengthy post about why your friends aren’t blogging when you can instead post “is wondering why his friends have stopped blogging” to your Facebook status? Which, incidentally, I have also done. The new version of Facebook even lets people give feedback directly on status updates, posted links, and photos.

So why do I cling to this (apparently) antiquated medium? Is it my tendency towards the wordy? Is it my desperate narcissism? It’s probably some combination of both. So what’s the word my former blogging friends? Has Facebook put the proverbial nail in your blog’s coffin?

7 thoughts on “Personal Blogs – An Endangered Species?

  1. It’s the lack of comments one gets on one’s blog. We need to feel the love, baby!

  2. Blogging takes time. A lot of time. I wouldn’t say I’ve abandoned my blog, but with the rise of other forms of social media, I think people have a good enough idea of what is going on in my life without the need for blogging. I can’t abandon a blog entirely as it’s mine and will always be there regardless of what the current hot social networking site is. Maybe blogging won’t be the primary purpose of it, but I do have a fair number of people who use that as their destination to find out what I’m doing from twitter and flickr, etc.

  3. While I am one of those who has neglected my website for some months, PAT MUST NEVER STOP HIS BLOG. It is the only source for adorable baby and toddler pictures that I have.

    Except for his overhead bin at work. 😉

  4. As someone who seldom looks at my own son’s blog and someone who is so out of touch with the modern 30-something scene I have a different perspective. One thing about the blog concept that nobody has mentioned is that it is a diary of sorts for posterity. I so wish I could spend time reading an old blog from my parents (Pat’s grandparents)from 1942 or 1955 or 1989! What did they think about when they were 20,30,40 or even into “old age 50”? What was happening in their world that impacted them? How did the day to day parenting decisions weight on their minds? This is all stuff that I would treasure if I could read it. So all you bloggers: blog for the next generation if not for yourselves! Don’t make it time-consuming. Just jot a thought now and then–those thoughts however seldom or short will be considered valuable by someone someday . . . . maybe even today.

  5. My opinion of FaceBook is the same as Friendster and MySpace. I don’t have an account on FaceBook, and I haven’t updated MySpace in nearly a year. I use Flickr for my pictures (and having seen a few Flickr hacks, I’m putting less stock in Flickr’s “privacy” & security). I use my blog to espouse my views. With the rebuild of a home server, I’ll put less on Flickr.

    Blogging has almost always been synonymous with “vanity blogging.” Blogs were a place to read someone’s online diary. As you noticed, there are many more ways to gratify our need for vanity now: twitter, flickr, facebook, IMs. Unfortunately, I feel this leaves fewer of the casual bloggers I used to enjoy reading, and more of the hardcore, commercial bloggers whom I do not.

    With blogging being replaced by even more transitory media (pictures, tweets, status updates), what’s that say about the attention span of the internet? At what point do we stop caring? Enjoying a 20-minute blog post, a 3-minute glance at a picture, a 20-second chuckle at a tweet or status update… at what point does your online existence cease to matter? I think we’re almost there.

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