Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Blogging community

I guess I've been blogging long enough to blog about blogging. Or more accurately, this is a blog post about blog books.

I bought my hubby "Blogging Heroes" by Michael Bank many months ago. He started a political blog during the presidential campaign. It was a good blog, but he didn't keep at it for very long. So now I get to read it!

I'm about halfway done with the book so far and to me it is missing some key components of what blogging is about. First, all the blogs profiled in the book (so far) are part of a blog publishing group or affiliated with another media outlet. Many of the bloggers are journalists or tech professionals who transitioned to blogs from magazines. I realize the book is about the top bloggers, but it is missing the organic audience growth that defines a lot of what blogging is about to me. It's not so surprising that a blog associated with PC magazine has tons of viewers, but it is noteworthy that so many bloggers start out as just regular people who write about interesting topics.

A second key component of blogging that the book completely misses is the community aspect. Few of the bloggers profiled comment on other blogs and most seem to read other blogs more to get "news" and see if they've been scooped rather than engage in a conversation. But I read the blogs that I do because I care about what these women are experiencing. And while I don't always comment on those blogs, I do feel like I'm engaging in a conversation with them.

One notable exception to this lack of attention to community in blogging was by one of the few women profiled. She made a concerted effort to read, comment, and participate in other people's blogs. Is this just a difference between men and women? Another example of women being the great communicators?


  1. I think that is an excellent observation. Men and women generally communicate differently, and that our attitudes toward blogging are different shouldn't be surprising. I'm reading Julie & Julia right now, and her attitude toward blogging is more typical for women... worrying about her audience, not wanting to let her readers down, wondering about the people who comment.

    Very interesting post... thanks for sharing!

  2. I've been thinking about this same thing lately. The interactions and people that I talk with via boards & blogs. I'm making a concerted effort to comment more!

  3. Wow interesting. I totally agree with you about the organic growth of a blog and how important and engaging that is. Part of my blogging experience is also about reading, commenting and caring about what other people are going through - I think that has taught me more about IF and blogging and has made my life richer for it.


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