It reminded me of a conversation Paul and I had months ago; the short version was “does the conversation, specifically blogging, matter anymore?”
There are so many voices now that you’ll struggle to find the good ones or even trust their integrity as voices. Every company has official blogs, which are generally assumed, sometimes unfairly, to be marketing rags; many people who once blogged for fun, now do so for big bucks, etc.
Take the Oracle blogosphere as an example; we’re not exactly charter members, having been around about a year and change, but in that time, the number of blogs aggregated by OraNA seems to have doubled, at least. I know several teams in product development have started blogs, and I still think this is a good thing.
I have a hybrid view of the question: the conversation does matter, but not as much as bloggers would have you believe, myself included.
Consider the people who have moved away from blogging, e.g. from the article in Wired, Jason Calacanis and Robert Scoble. These are early adopter types, not mainstream; their opinions matter mainly to other early adopters. So, it’s pretty easy to understand why they’ve left blogging as it became more mainstream.
As the mainstream jumps into blogging, the content becomes more, well, mainstream. Not a bad thing, just different. You could argue that blogging now is more important than ever, due to its ever-increasing reach and expanding audience, whereas in the good old days of 2004, there were a lot fewer opinions bouncing around the echochamber.
Plus, the options aren’t equivalent, e.g. Twitter, though it forces brevity suffers from the same signal to noise issues, and it’s more effective as a communication mechanism than a broadcast one. If you use Twitter, how many broadcasting-type people do you follow, i.e. those who only publish content and rarely reply @ anyone?
This whole discussion tempts me to point to the observation Paul made earlier this year that Web 2.0 has jumped the shark.
Obviously you read blogs. What are your thoughts? Do you blog too, if so why? If not, why not? Does the conversation matter to you, or is it a diversion?
What makes a good blog? Reporting news, adding opinion to news, both, neither?
Do you dis/like the proliferation of blogs, especially from within Oracle? Why or why not?
I actually am interested. It’s good to know this stuff when people ask.