Blogs, Dead.

Mark Evans pulled a few threads together for me [Has the Blogosphere stalled] citing statistics that show blog growth leveling off. Mark thinks as “factor could be the explosive growth of MySpace and Facebook, which provide people with the ability to write and share their thoughts without setting up a traditional blog.” Ironically, Mark writes for a professional blog startup.

Absolutely. With every new media you have to consider, what does it obsolesce? If you think about, facebook and Social presence, it has to be killing blogging, especially the sort of casual/social bogs just read among friends. Facebook just does that so much better.

Scobble says twitter makes him a better blogger. (what do you think that means?) (I can’t remember o

At SXSW, Bruce Sterling (wonderfully)foretold the death of blogs. On his blog (heh), he explains a little further [SXSW Rant, death of “blogs,” etc etc] ‘there won’t be blogs around in ten years. There will be post-blog stuff. Megatons of crucial, important stuff. Just not “blogs.”‘

Amen, I’m ready for my post-blog. Blogs you remember, grew up a long time ago. At any rate, by the standard of internet time [which is like dog time but divided by 49]. First came the chronological structure, then comments, permalinks, trackbacks, innumerable sidebarwidgets and etc. were all crufted-on over time. And the blogs all work pretty well and a huge step forward vs the 90s web. But… as teh blogs are getting on, their finally starting to look a little… crufty.

Facebook and social presence apps/environments are incrementally* sapping attention from the bloggoshpere. Facebook is a walled garden, and twitter/jaiku are far from ready for primetime but these and the likes of b5 (I’ll call them post-blog too), and more and more interesting things you can do with rss, are agglomerating on the horizon.

“blogs that really interest me are not people blogging their web activities, they’re clearly platforms for developing something. They’re not simply: look at this, look at this, I saw this, I saw this… which is sort of like watching you get beaten to death by crutons” -Sterling

Blogs will evolve and specialize into whatever it is they are best at. In the meantime, other newer media will consume from the margins all those things that were probably not best on a blog to begin with (“when all you have is a laser – everything looks laserable).

Forget your personal or corporate blog strategy. Have you started to imagine your post-blog strategy?

*Longtime readers will know that in my own special way, what I like to lump in the general category of “Dead Media!” other, more reasonable (rational/boring), people might otherwise describe as “a subtle shifting in social emphasis”. But, for me, provocative definitions of “dead” and “media” always encouraged.

  • Fix Usenet

    > And the blogs all work pretty well and a huge step forward vs
    > the 90s web.

    You’re basis of comparison is off. You should be comparing blogs as a communication platform to Usenet or possibly mailing lists.

    This entire blogging + comments system is ridiculous; simultaneously a step *backwards* and widely touted as a brilliant innovation.

    It’s mostly fine for one-way communication but that is not enough for the majority of cases.

    Tracking a discussion on ‘blogs’ is a nightmare.
    There is no unified way to respond (comment) through RSS. I have to go to *every* sites custom web form to do so.
    Commenting implementation (if it exists) are inconsistent. Comments often have no threading (and if they did it RSS wouldn’t be able to handle it). Even if there is an RSS feed for comments they must be added manually and are not tied to the original post. When there is no RSS (often the case) I can’t be bothered to go to the websites of the plethora of blogs I track.

    Usenet is far from perfect (even far from good), but people
    should have recognized what they were trying to do (communication forum) and learned from Usenet, building on it or fixing it, instead of all these ugly hacks on RSS, which was not meant to do what people want to do today. Whatever people come up with to solve the RSS comments problem is just going to be another ugly hack (proclaimed to be revolutionary solution).

  • Fix Usenet

    > And the blogs all work pretty well and a huge step forward vs
    > the 90s web.

    You’re basis of comparison is off. You should be comparing blogs as a communication platform to Usenet or possibly mailing lists.

    This entire blogging + comments system is ridiculous; simultaneously a step *backwards* and widely touted as a brilliant innovation.

    It’s mostly fine for one-way communication but that is not enough for the majority of cases.

    Tracking a discussion on ‘blogs’ is a nightmare.
    There is no unified way to respond (comment) through RSS. I have to go to *every* sites custom web form to do so.
    Commenting implementation (if it exists) are inconsistent. Comments often have no threading (and if they did it RSS wouldn’t be able to handle it). Even if there is an RSS feed for comments they must be added manually and are not tied to the original post. When there is no RSS (often the case) I can’t be bothered to go to the websites of the plethora of blogs I track.

    Usenet is far from perfect (even far from good), but people
    should have recognized what they were trying to do (communication forum) and learned from Usenet, building on it or fixing it, instead of all these ugly hacks on RSS, which was not meant to do what people want to do today. Whatever people come up with to solve the RSS comments problem is just going to be another ugly hack (proclaimed to be revolutionary solution).

  • I agree completely*. Blogs make for a better pulpit than they do a forum.

    rss + comment integration is profoundly broken. And as we all shift to consuming blog by rss it matters even more. comments get lost in the shuffle.

    Sure, if we all have blogs, we can all shout to each other from our pulpits. But that’s hardly ideal.

    I don’t think usenet such as it is (was) is the answer, but it had some/many subtle merits.

    the post-blog, as it obsolesces blogs, should retrieve what was lost in usenet, in terms of coherent, centralized discourse.

    * I should have said a step forward from the graphical web/http publishing of the 90s, I wasn’t even considering usenet in the comparison (but should have).

  • I agree completely*. Blogs make for a better pulpit than they do a forum.

    rss + comment integration is profoundly broken. And as we all shift to consuming blog by rss it matters even more. comments get lost in the shuffle.

    Sure, if we all have blogs, we can all shout to each other from our pulpits. But that’s hardly ideal.

    I don’t think usenet such as it is (was) is the answer, but it had some/many subtle merits.

    the post-blog, as it obsolesces blogs, should retrieve what was lost in usenet, in terms of coherent, centralized discourse.

    * I should have said a step forward from the graphical web/http publishing of the 90s, I wasn’t even considering usenet in the comparison (but should have).

  • Nice headline, but it reminds me of (with apologies to someone who escapes me right now) “blogs are dead, long live blogging”.

    Blogs introduced the conversational web, and sure, @Fix Usenet its not perfect but neither is MySpace/Facebook/network de jour.

    The evolution is the interesting part, and CoComment for example was an attempt to address the shortcomings, although it got no traction. Its almost like we need the next RSS.

    Nice post btw!

  • Fix Usenet

    Colin:

    The question is, given .that we want to build a messaging/conversation system, why aren’t we asking ‘What is wrong with Usenet’ or ‘What is wrong with mailing lists’ and trying to build on that, instead of taking RSS (which wasn’t designed to do this) and tacking on some kludge.
    I know, I know, Usenet and email are not the new hotness like RSS is but they were designed to do pretty much what people want to do.
    I’ll take tried and true over new and shiny any day.

    In fact, what advantage does RSS have over a mailing list that only lets the owner post the first message? Using e-mail would consolidate messaging and you would be able to take advantage of its filtering, sorting and delivery mechanisms.

    P.S. CoComment is a frightening solution to the problem.

  • Fix Usenet

    Colin:

    The question is, given .that we want to build a messaging/conversation system, why aren’t we asking ‘What is wrong with Usenet’ or ‘What is wrong with mailing lists’ and trying to build on that, instead of taking RSS (which wasn’t designed to do this) and tacking on some kludge.
    I know, I know, Usenet and email are not the new hotness like RSS is but they were designed to do pretty much what people want to do.
    I’ll take tried and true over new and shiny any day.

    In fact, what advantage does RSS have over a mailing list that only lets the owner post the first message? Using e-mail would consolidate messaging and you would be able to take advantage of its filtering, sorting and delivery mechanisms.

    P.S. CoComment is a frightening solution to the problem.

  • Pingback: The blog is dead. Long live the blog! « Neomeme()

  • Hm. I recall when McLuhan said, when something obsolesces, it’s really only just beginning. As Colin cites above, ‘blogging is dead… long live blogging’.

    New media incorporate the old and the old incorporate the new. Usenet threads are somewhat wiki-like, non? The telegraph became the newspaper. The book became the film. The TV becomes the web. VJ’s the new DJ’s redux. The tetrad operates simultaneously, less a product life-cycle.

    Me thinks blogs carry our individual memes in the electronic mind. The residual individual as a thread web co-creator. Conversations represent social tribes and tribalism. Tribes negate residual individuals as unnecessary ‘I’s’ in place of ‘we’. Leaders always assume they’re the ‘we’ in tribes.

    Each medium has its own intrinsic merit. Independent thinking and expressing – shoebox ‘pulpits’ (liberal/conservative blogs, etc), whilst building consensus around shared roles (those democratic compromises for social media to work). Flag this content as (in)appropriate…

    Conversations are ‘speech-based’ anyway, since text is more about exchanging the doctrinal syntax of ‘the printed word’. Hence, with instant IM you get ‘chat’ and gesture as the effect, not typed text. ;-O

    What’s concerning is that blogging will be ‘dead media’ as well as ‘wikis’, and all bygone embodiments of electronic texts when we don’t bother using the ‘alphabet-as-text’ anyway — when opting instead for instant ‘speech-based’ and/or image-based dialog. That’s just an iphone, away and/or a google voicemail, flickring fast…

  • Hm. I recall when McLuhan said, when something obsolesces, it’s really only just beginning. As Colin cites above, ‘blogging is dead… long live blogging’.

    New media incorporate the old and the old incorporate the new. Usenet threads are somewhat wiki-like, non? The telegraph became the newspaper. The book became the film. The TV becomes the web. VJ’s the new DJ’s redux. The tetrad operates simultaneously, less a product life-cycle.

    Me thinks blogs carry our individual memes in the electronic mind. The residual individual as a thread web co-creator. Conversations represent social tribes and tribalism. Tribes negate residual individuals as unnecessary ‘I’s’ in place of ‘we’. Leaders always assume they’re the ‘we’ in tribes.

    Each medium has its own intrinsic merit. Independent thinking and expressing – shoebox ‘pulpits’ (liberal/conservative blogs, etc), whilst building consensus around shared roles (those democratic compromises for social media to work). Flag this content as (in)appropriate…

    Conversations are ‘speech-based’ anyway, since text is more about exchanging the doctrinal syntax of ‘the printed word’. Hence, with instant IM you get ‘chat’ and gesture as the effect, not typed text. ;-O

    What’s concerning is that blogging will be ‘dead media’ as well as ‘wikis’, and all bygone embodiments of electronic texts when we don’t bother using the ‘alphabet-as-text’ anyway — when opting instead for instant ‘speech-based’ and/or image-based dialog. That’s just an iphone, away and/or a google voicemail, flickring fast…

  • Pingback: Weblog Qjm.be » Blog Archive » Blogs, Dead.()

  • Nice headline, but it reminds me of (with apologies to someone who escapes me right now) “blogs are dead, long live blogging”.

    Blogs introduced the conversational web, and sure, @Fix Usenet its not perfect but neither is MySpace/Facebook/network de jour.

    The evolution is the interesting part, and CoComment for example was an attempt to address the shortcomings, although it got no traction. Its almost like we need the next RSS.

    Nice post btw!