Are personal blogs dead?

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Wired Magazine has some advice for bloggers: shut down your blog. The premise: professional blogging sites (who have an army of writers posting upto 30 posts a day) leave no chance for individual bloggers to get noticed. Some of the professional blogging sites mentioned – Huffington Post, Engadget – are virtual magazines, professionally brought out and churning out posts like a factory. They are also likely to employ specialist SEO consultants who can ensure high rankings in search pages. The article says:

Today, a search for, say, Barack Obama’s latest speech will deliver a Wikipedia page, a Fox News article, and a few entries from professionally run sites like The odds of your clever entry appearing high on the list? Basically zero.

Personal bloggers will only attract the Net’s ‘lowest form of life’: the insult commenter, says the article. I think this is an extreme view. On the point about the ‘insult commenter’ – they are everywhere, not just on blogs. Check out any potentially controversial video or commercial on YouTube and you will find your insult commenter spewing venom. And oh, about Twitter – for some strange reason, I have really not taken up to it. The article says the forced brevity of Twitter ‘lets amateurs quit agonizing over their writing and cut to the chase’. But I have have not found posts in the area of ‘woke up early today’ making me addicted to Twitter. Maybe I am reading the wrong kind of posts there.

And about personal blogs not standing a chance against the professional bloggers: blogging is not just about getting the highest ranking on Google Page Views. Some blog only for one reason: because. One could take up cycling for the same reason. And not worry about Lance Armstrong being in the same sport. Even if the blog is read by a handful of people and attracts few or no comments, the ‘high’ is about getting a point of view out of your system. Readership is a bonus. What say?

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  1. Completely agree with you have to say.

    I do not blog because I want the world to read my opinions but share things that I think are important to me and I think my friends or my contacts would want to know about.

    I also use my blog as my CV. In case I need professional contacts, people can read what I do and what interests me. People would know what they are getting into.

    As far as professional blogging sites and search engine rankings go, they might eventually end up replacing the traditional media engines.


  2. The twitter feeds are a sham. Okay, we get it, “What you are doing”. But once you get used to twitter, enough of the small talk! “It’s raining here!” is one of the worst kinds of tweets. Not to mention I myself partake in some of these nonsense tweets (though I don’t do it excessively). I mean, if a person has 10k tweets within the span of 10 months, you can expect what the quality of those tweets will be like. Unfollowed.

    Personal blogs are the best. Every comment is cherished, and every linkup gives you immense satisfaction. Takes a little of your time, but it leaves a trail of history behind, so you know how things have gone in your own life.

    And I don’t consider Engadget and the like as ‘blogs’. They are websites that merely use the blogging platform (software) to publish content.

    [And what’s with the difficult math for spam protection? I had to use the age old “7 in my mind, 6 out” technique to get to the figure 13]

  3. I agree on Twitter wholeheartedly! I am not a Twitter addict for the same reasons. On the anti-spam math protection, will check out Captcha and see if its any better.

  4. Saurabh, , thanks for the comment. Even blogs that don’t chase readership have a loyal fan base – check out His humour is very Tamil/Madras based but going by the comments he gets, people looking forward to his posts every week!

  5. People came on to the blogosphere from the internet for a reason. They wanted to express and hear from others, as individuals. Today, people on the blog side of life, if I may call them so, look at things with different perspectives.
    For e.g.- I may look at the movie reviews in a TOI or HT, but I am equally looking forward to the reviews by greatbong (look him up). He analyses movies with the raw, acerbic lens that I apply and appreciate.

    These sites-masquerading-as-blogs would appear, shine and then lose out as people find too many things to follow. I have about 100 feeds on my reader now, and mostly don’t find time to read a site that has 47 posts in the three days that I’ve been off.

    May be I’m slow. Maybe.

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