The chatter over blogs

25 Jan

Blogs are a relatively new but have quickly become popular, even in the world of journalism. Journalists are among the many types of people who are using blogs to put out information over the web. Professional news organizations, like newspapers, are using blogs to break news to their readers immediately. But, really anyone can blog. Fashionistas have blogs on where to find the best, stylish deals. Mothers even blog about their kids and daily life, as in mom blogs. Others use the medium as their personal diary. It’s a fact that today countless people have and utilize blogs. Even though there is no denying the popularity of this new form of expression, one question still remains. What exactly is a blog?

There are so many different uses, users and way to go about blogging. So, what are the guidelines? Where are the black and white carved-out rules on what constitutes a blog. Well, that’s just it. There are no such rules, yet. But there is currently much discussion to try and figure it all out.

Technorati had an interesting approach in trying to define blogging. They put the question out there and asked their community of followers. They asked bloggers, readers and writers to see what they thought. They received many good and interesting responses.

Regardless of the tiny particulars, there are three elements that most seem to agree are essential in making a blog a blog. Most blogs are reverse chronological order, written by one person and updated regularly. There doesn’t seem to be much argument about that. Truly, that’s a pretty good definition to start off with. It isn’t too specific, and yet it isn’t too vague that it lacks substance.

I think what really makes a blog is tone of voice and the author’s assertion that it is a blog. Tone of voice is important because it portraits the feel of the author’s writing. I always think of a blog as being more relaxed and less formal than an actual print story. I envision the writing in a blog to be similar to a conversation I would have with a friend. So, tone of voice is something I use when deciding if it is a blog. And I think that the author’s opinion matters when deciding if it is a blog or not. If the author thinks it is a blog, he will probably write it like a blog. Anyway, that is just my opinion for now. It could change, just as the opinions of the public on the topic could. That is the thing. I don’t really think there is a wrong answer when discussing topics like this pertaining to journalism. Journalism is always changing. I think the point is to be flexible enough to change our ideas to flow with journalism’s changes.


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