Tuesday, February 21, 2006

More on the meaning of blogs

Grumpy Old Bookman: The impact of blogs "Auntie: How do you fill up your time now that you're retired? Me: Well, I do quite a lot of writing. I run a thing called a blog, on the internet. Auntie: Oh. And is that very remunerative? Me: No. I've never earned a penny from it. Auntie: Oh. Well in that case it doesn't count." Says it all, really. The post (linked to above) is pertinent: a few stats about how many people read blogs, and why on earth one would want to write one. One thinks of the Internet as an unbelivably huge mass of information, which it is. Only two blogs (out of an Internet total of 27.2 million) get over 1 million readers a day (wonder which? The FT article discussed by GOB and linked to on Petrona 2 at the time of publication, presumably containing the info, is now behind a subscription wall) . The 1oooth most popular blog has under 600 readers a day. But the amazing thing I have learned since starting blogging a mere 3 months ago is not the number of readers, but how quick and easy it is to target one's blog readership to those on topics that interest you. In my case, incredibly "niche". But I have enjoyed so much in such a brief time from reading GOB, Books, Inq., Collected Miscellany, Confessions of an Idiosyncratic Mind, Contemporary Nomad, Light Reading, Another 52 Books, Book of the Day, and quite a few others. (91 bloglines feeds currently: I had to delete the really manic sites like Delicious, coming in at 200 new items an hour). "Prioritise and focus" takes on a new meaning in the blogging context. What an amazing combination, blogs and rss readers. How lucky we are to be living in such times, where wherever you live in the world you can so easily find just the very thing that you always wanted to read about did you but know it. And participate. And all for free.