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Who wants to be famous?

I was reading the Sunday Times this weekend and came across a post article about The Golden Rules for blogging. It offers readers general rules of thumb on how to avoid getting into trouble by writing a blog. It also made some horrendous assumptions about bloggers:

Who are you trying to kid? There were 70 billion blogs in the world yesterday, there will be 70 billion billion by next week, and what crazy hubris makes you think you have anything new or interesting to say? Yet you, like all the other lemmings, assume your blog will be one of the tiny fraction that is brilliant, and you’ve already got your gleeful little paws over the edge of the cliff.

My beef with this is that the bloggers that “assume your [their] blog will be one of the tiny fraction that is brilliant” are not in fact the motives of the entire blogging population, or indeed a very large part of it. It’s a common attack pointed at bloggers. There are a lot of people blogging out there and not all of them are doing it for the same reason. One reason to blog is to reach friends and family without sending blanket emails to people. Another might be to keep a record of one’s life. Another might be to record notes and thoughts for a PhD, or other research project. Not all bloggers are obsessed with who visits their site. Some are, and indeed for some the number of people visiting their site is important, particularly those bloggers who are writers and journalists. But my point is, that this does not apply to all bloggers, perhaps not even the majority. Last year I went to the BlogTalk 2.0 conference in Vienna, and heard Mena Trott, one half of the founders of Six Apart talk about her experiences with blogging. She was getting thousands of hits and comments every day and reportedly found the experience hugely draining. She resulted in (if I recall correctly??) stopping her blog and maintaining a very much reduced one, leaving behind any expectations that her previous audience held.

As Suw Charman has said, the blog is not a diary, or a net to catch as many eyeballs as possible . It is a place to write stuff. How you use that place is up to the individual.

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One Comment

  1. I think the discipline of writing regularly is, for me, one of the most compelling reasons for maintaining a blog.


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