Sarah posted over on RWW questioning the future for blogging. She questioned whether lifestreaming (which I’m officially terming digital diarrhoea from now on) will replace blogging as the digital trend de jour.
In her post Sarah states that;
There was a time when casual, personal blogging was your way to communicate with your friends on the web. Via posts, commenting, and blogrolls, bloggers formed niche communities on the web to socialize with each other. Today, new tools provide that same level of socialization – perhaps even better than blogging ever could.
Of course Sarah’s comments make sense when we’re talking about the social web. Sure it’s easier to twitter with a bunch of friends – it’s lower effort than blogging and less overall hassle. Sarah gives a couple of examples of sites that are micro blog life streams, one over here and one here. Digital diarrhoea for sure!
But I, and the vast majority of bloggers whom I follow, blog for very different reasons than to let our close circle of 4000 Facebook friends know when we’re going to bed or other such earth shattering events (hell if we need to twitter does that just fine). We blog to disseminate critical observation, analysis and commentary.
Now of course some within traditional media would say that blogging is an abomination and lessens the quality of information transmitted – however as a writer both in traditional and new media I can tell you that the quality of analysis on new media is generally at the same or better level than old media.
Similarly there are those from the hyper-new media (twitterati, plurkers, friend feeders et al) who would say that lifestreaming is just the natural progression – that just as blogging is the medium that disrupts traditional journalism, so to is lifestreaming the medium that’ll break blogging.
Bollocks (and oh don’t I sound like Dennis Howlett saying that)
In the few hundred words that my posts tend to average – I believe I can articulate a clear and decisive perspective. Short enough to be easily digested over a coffee, but long enough to get the facts across. Lifestreaming is all about 140 characters, brightkite images and seesmic vids. It’s basis is social and this is where it works best.
Comment of the day goes to Matthew who said in response to Sarah’s post;
Lifestreaming is even more of a niche than blogging is! I’m not sure why there seems to be this constant push that "X will replace Y." All these tools and forms of communication are additive. TV did not kill radio, the internet ain’t killing TV anytime soon, despite what we all read, write and think.
When we get out there in the "real world," the penetration into the public consciousness of all of these things (blogging, podcasting, Twitter, FriendFeed, etc.), things that seem like second nature to all of us, is so mind bogglingly low, we would all do well to recognize.
I think we in the vanguard of all this stuff tend to jump on the next shiny, new thing instead of focusing less on the tools and more on how we’re going to change the face of communication.
So let’s get this straight – blogging isn’t dead, isn’t going to be disrupted anytime soon, and has plenty of excitement left to it – and that I know for sure, watch this space over the next few weeks for more.