Has blogging lost its personal touch? Blogging started out as an online diary, publicly sharing one’s life experiences. then blogging became a business, large enough to threaten print media as we know it.
What happened to all the personal blogs? Does anyone read those anymore?
Just as people once kept diaries through the days of discovery and exploration, the process of documenting one’s thoughts and experiences hasn’t really disappeared–it’s merely shifted. These necessities of human culture bend and evolve along with other trends and fads that define eras.
So what of those personal blogs? They haven’t disappeared, and we didn’t stop reading them. They’ve simply morphed into readily accessible, byte-sized status updates. In a word, microblogging.
It takes such a small amount of time to tweet a passing thought, making it immediately viewable and searchable to the world. to make the process of sharing one’s experiences even easier, we’ve begun to automate the aspects of that process that don’t even require thought. Your GPS location can be auto-posted on Twitter. A photo taken with a camera, mobile phone or webcam can be auto-loaded into Flickr. Your life, in digital form, can be synced across multiple devices and organized accordingly. This all makes for easy access of your life’s content later on down the line.
Yes, tweets seem simple and fleeting. Yet the presence of Twitter and the applications its platform supports are changing the way in which the globe communicates. It’s not that blogs are becoming less personal–it’s just that we’re quickly progressing the way in which we utilize and value the information we’re already sharing with each other.
Aside from the natural necessity to improve upon an established system, we also witness the corporatization of that system. As I’ve already noted, the once diary-like versions of weblogging have irreversibly been shaped int a string of commodities that are monetizable and support their own economic subsets. The same process will happen to microblogging, and it is already under way.
In order for a system to become a viable option made available to the masses, it must first be financially supported and sustained. Call it corporate greed, but certain aspects of a phenomenon such as Twitter would not be possible without the economic structure it both creates and advances from. The result is a mad dash from investors, analysts and users to figure out why something has become so popular, and how money can be made from that popularity.
The economy driven by a service like Twitter can be shaped into a force with some help from corporate omnipresence. Yes, such a corporate takeover could provide the incentives for global innovation within the microblogging industry. Just look at the battle going on between Facbook and Twitter, constantly reminding us that the implementation of an idea matters for more than coming up with an idea. In this way, the true value of a product of service becomes rather subjective, and the general public can oftentimes be more easily swayed.
Even as we shift from one form of journal entry to another, we find that the ability to share out thoughts is never lost. The corporatization of that thought-sharing has helped to change the way in which we blog over the past several years. We need to determine how much of the microblogging trend will be given to the monetization process, and how much of it will simply be used to share experiences with one another.