Once again it's being claimed that blogs are dead.
A decade ago, everyone was talking about blogs. Bloggers claimed they were going to make the mainstream media obsolete. The mainstream media dismissed bloggers as losers writing in their mom's basement in their pajamas — while simultaneously starting their own blogs and hiring some of the best bloggers. Now, the distinction between "blogs" and everything else on the Web has all but disappeared.
The New York Times is phasing out or consolidating "almost half" of its blogs. Times assistant managing editor Ian Fisher tells Poynter's Andrew Beaujon, "We're going to continue to provide bloggy content with a more conversational tone. We're just not going to do them as much in standard reverse-chronological blogs."
While the decision partly had to do with technical issues, Fisher explains that, "It was very hard to understand the difference between some of the general sections and the blogs themselves." Moreover, even the small blogs "required an enormous amount of resources, because a blog is an animal that is always famished."
Having blogged almost daily since January 2003, I can attest to that. There's simultaneously always something else to write about and yet often nothing one feels inspired to write about. Yet the pressure to crank out the content to keep the page fresh and the traffic coming never lets up.
. . .
Over the years, my own blogging production has dwindled, from an average of 13 pieces a day to fewer than that a week. Partly, I've tired of feeding the famished animal and of much of the domestic political debate. Partly, I'm doing more of my writing for an outside audience. Mostly, though, blogging has evolved from being a game with traffic and links as the way to keep score to a conversation with a core readership.
There's more at the link.
I disagree strongly that blogs are dead - in fact, I think good blogs are undergoing something of a rebirth and a resurrection in popularity. I think Ann Althouse put it well in a recent article.
Blogging is a writing format, and it can be mobilized in service of different ends. I'm pleased at the failure of blogging as a means to the end of increasing traffic to a mainstream media website. I have long believed in blogging as a format for independent, individualized personal expression.
You've got to be the blog, not regard it as a pesky Other, always whining for more.
Again, more at the link.
This blog is basically my main contact with my readers, both of my blog and of my books. I post a lot of things that I've found interesting, in the hope that you will too; I respond to issues of the day (most recently the brouhaha over the so-called 'rape culture', which appears to exist only in the minds of its obsessed proponents); and I have used, and continue to use, it to hone my writing skills and enhance my ability to express myself. All of that makes for better books for you to enjoy. Sarah Hoyt does likewise on her blog, as does Larry Correia, John Scalzi and many other authors.
I think blogs are far from dead for those who enjoy the craft of writing. What do you think, dear readers? Please let us know your views in Comments. I think it would be good to examine this from as many perspectives as possible.