As a blogger myself I know the importance of creating an online identity. I started snooping around to see what has been written on blogging and how much people really know about it. It is strange to me that people still define a blog as an online journal or diary, because this definition for me is a bit out dated.
Blogging has moved past only being a journal filled with a blogger’s personal thoughts and experiences. Another definition I found was by Cedar Pruitt who said it is an “ongoing documentation that can be viewed by anyone in the world with access to the internet”. This definition is probably more accurate but it still doesn’t dig into the essence of a blog.
After sending out a survey on blogging to TUKS journalism and communication students, I was shocked at how little they knew. All of those who replied said they do not have a blog but interestingly one student replied saying “Yes, if Facebook counts as a blog”. It was a great shock to me to realize that there are people that are clueless when it comes to the online world. Personally, when I studied journalism we didn’t even glance in the direction of online media and that’s tragic.
When asked whether blogging could become a form of journalism most students replied “no” and said that it does not require journalistic skill. What is ironic about this statement is how incorrect it really is in terms of how many great journalists there are in the world who do not have a journalistic degree or ‘skill’.
According to Cedar Pruitt blogging has already started to have a powerful effect on mainstream media. An important characteristic of a blog that makes it different from other forms of information media is the ability of its readers to give immediate feedback by publishing a comment on a story.
The blogging phenomenon is here and it’s real, but what people want to know is ‘why blog?’ and the answer is clearly not reaching everyone.