I noticed this tweet by Andy today, it’s something that people have been talking about for a while, mostly since the rise of Twitter.
In a recent unscientific poll, carried out by myself, I struggled to find bloggers of a particular kind at work as many had said they had basically given it a rest for a while, in favor of micro-blogging only. We have also seen the tremendous rise of Tumblr, which although a blogging platform lends itself more to re-blogging or sharing information you find. In my mind these are possibly closer fits to Delicious and Digg than blogging.
So what is the point of blogging?
Communication obviously, but also personal development. Turns out that young people are better at communication than us old farts. Stanford conducted a study that found writing for a large audience, rather than for one, is a great way to develop writing skills. Penelope Trunk aims her comments squarely at Gen-Y but if you look towards the technical community they have (of all ages) been doing this since computers could talk to each other. Which brings me back to Andy, who is part of IBMs technical community. I don’t know Andy’s age but I’m guessing it’s closer to Gen-X than Y.
I know for a fact that the Gen-Y thing is just a convenient way to group people for this purpose and nothing else. It certainly isn’t a done deal on anyone’s part and shouldn’t be used to say, “I’m too old for this stuff.” Actually the other day, someone was asking me (a Gen-Y) about lists in Twitter when someone on the other side of the divide piped up saying that they had just joined Facebook.
Like most things, being good at it is essentially down to practice. You may never have 40,000 readers but you will become a better writer and better at managing the information that is available to us all.
Anyway… blogging can be useful in a number of ways, but you may not be sure how to start blogging. From a technical point of view, don’t even go there. If you can’t manage to use WordPress, blogger, tumblr or similar services than you may as well shut down your email client too. and start pushing trolleys at Tesco. Again Penelope has some great advice on blogging.
My 1-2-3.. start reading a select bunch of blogs, comment on those and then write your own.
Otherwise you can stick to reading The Daily Mail and Daily Express where it’s all cancer and royal weddings.
And while my 2 year old is using me as a climbing frame at this precise moment a word on typos which you’ll probably find a few of on my blog that has considerably less the 40,000 subscribers.