Some thoughts on blogging

It's been a couple weeks since I posted. It feels like a couple months. Some thoughts from the pause:

  1. Once momentum is lost, it's a lot easier for the blog to remain at rest. For all the physicists out there, there's no lack of force around here, but it has been driving business activities other than the blog.
  2. The blogs I've followed since "the early days" of social media post much less frequently today. That contributes to a lack of great content to react to.
  3. Audiences and attention have fragmented wildly. The growth of other platforms (e.g. social networks, Twitter, Tumblr, Posterous) has clearly cut into the time and attention paid to blogs.
  4. Even ego traps don't work well anymore.
  5. Not posting on a blog reminds me of that Geico commercial – it's just sitting there watching at you, waiting for you to post again.

I've been thinking of a way to wrap up the year. More to come…

Join the Conversation

No comments

  1. If your blogging perceptions are solely based on a small fragment of sites that you say infrequently add content, why don’t you, uhh, broaden your horizon? I’m adding content on my blog nearly every day and I read/comment dozens of blogs each day with their content, too.

  2. Peter –

    You might want to try what I did: switch to a more tumble blogging style, with shorter posts, links, quips, one liners. You may find it more fun, less overhead, more feedback from those following. I switched to the Pico template, but mostly it’s in you head.

  3. My feeling is that a new form of blogging is emerging – part sharing/lifestreaming, part writing/observing. Posterous (and Tumblr to a lesser extent) are platforms well built to support this trend. Steve Rubel shared some thoughts on this when he switched to Posterous as his main content platform earlier in the year.

    In this fast paced modern world ‘knowledge’ ages so quickly – whether in the form of a document, a presentation or even blog post. As a result I think it’s become more important to find and regularly interact with knowledgeable individuals within your niche instead.

    I think that the ideal new blogging model falls somewhere between being too ‘noisy’ by lifestreaming everything and being to quiet/self focused by blogging only personal thoughts. Cherrypicking the best web ‘shares’ tweets, links etc seems the way to go, and overtime shares a truer picture of an individual. Put it this way – it’s useful for me to see what you’re reading, what conferences you’re attending, what online services you discover etc.

    Perhaps you should consider trailing this approach for a few weeks? I notice that you host your blog with TypePad – why not try the new TypePad Micro service a go and see how it works out?

  4. Keep at it. I count on your insights to keep me engaged. I don’t agree with the Tumblr method that Stowe recommended. I miss Stowe’s blog. It’s been on answering machine mode for weeks and weeks.

    Blogging’s how we got here. We were all just working in single-industry visibility until blogging opened us all up to each other.

    Please stick with it? I miss you.

  5. Good idea. I think part of the issue is the way I think about blogging and my expectations for blogs. Whereas content is content, regardless of container. All about finding a good balance, I guess.

  6. Thanks for the encouragement and reminder, Chris. From what I can tell on the outside, we’re facing similar “good problems to have,” e.g. an influx of new business…but somehow you have time to blog as regularly as brushing your teeth. Amazing. Hopefully we’ll get a chance to catch up in person sometime in 2010. Maybe at Logan?

  7. It’s been a few weeks short of a year since I’ve left a comment on your blog, Peter. (Learned a lot about blogging — and commenting — along the way.) Regardless of the frequency of your posts, when new PK post pops up in my feed, I know it will be worth the time to read. (Frequency is great, but, of course, is not necessarily directly proportionate to value.)

    I initially worked hard at posting at least twice a week on my own blog, but, as you mention, there are other business activities that demand attention as well, and it is a challenge to strike a balance, though a good “problem” to have. I find there is plenty of great content to react to, it’s the “reaction time” (getting a response out ahead of the masses) that can present a larger challenge in this very crowded space. So I do what I can, when I can.

    As for the bloggers from the “early days” whose frequency you’ve mentioned has dropped off, I would imagine they’re giving their blogs “what they can, when they can” given the multitude of other platforms available with which to experiment and experience. Which strikes me as perfectly reasonable and wholly forgivable. At the end of the day, I think most readers would always choose quality over quantity.

    As for your Geico reference, instead of thinking of your blog like the eyeballs, why not think of it more like the gecko… who doesn’t love to hear what the gecko has to say, regardless of how often he says it?

  8. Hey Peter
    I’m with Chris on this one, I’ve been a reader of your blog for quite some time. I find your insights valuable especially in my new role at Cliqset. Stay the course…even if you have to do it a little less frequent. There are those of us who eagerly await your insights.

  9. Peter, you have encapsulated some of my mental wanderings over the last year about blogging – but then you usually “speak” to me in whatever you write. I miss the deeper insights, thinking out loud and thought essays discovered in blogs – and of those I followed in the “earlier days” as well. Heck, in this noisy world, I miss thinking, period.

    The demands of business and keeping up on change in this space is often at odds with that kind of blogging, as Renee so articulately said. On the other hand, the demands of business in this arena is a never-ending immersion in the real issues clients are grappling with. Quality is worth waiting for and I go out of my way to look for it. Should you choose to continue to blog, you will have an audience because you deliver it. Digital behaviors are not limited to the visibility of a few behaviors.

    Please remember that celebrity and reputation are not the same thing. 🙂

  10. One argument for continuing to post longer form is the great comments (and commenters) this post has surfaced. I’d second the feelings of Chris, Linda, Jim, RockinRobinc and others and encourage you to write “out loud” so we can follow along and participate.

    Holler if there is anything on the TypePad side I can help with.

  11. Personally, I like posts that have a bit more “chew” in them… The micro blogging craze is unsatisfying.

    Is blogging about you and what you want to say? Or is it about your readers and giving them some chewy goodness that will keep them coming back for more???


  12. Hi Peter. Nice to see you back, and I do look forward to seeing how you will wrap up the year in your next post. You know, I find it a bit sad that those who you have followed since the early days post much less frequently than before. I know that momentum can’t remain the same but I also think that many people who rose to their current status through their blogs seem to forget that when they reach a certain point. We are all strapped for time, and I get that…but blogging is still a great method for making a difference. Hopefully though, that lack of posting made way for newcomers and that is probably the way it should be.

  13. Peter, don’t be driven to post something for the sake of posting something. Too many people opt for that approach just to feed the beast.

    Communications technologies through history have accelerated communication to the point where instantaneous response is possible and time for sober second thought has all but evaporated — except by choice.

    Our speed-obsessed culture eschews anything that is less than immediate. Take the time you need to develop your thoughts. Take time to reflect. Choose not to react. It’s worth the wait.

  14. A question if I may..

    I have read a number of blogs of some of my fellow South Africans. Three of them are particularly annoying, because one day the blog would contain a post I really enjoy reading and the next day something completely from the other side of the world.

    So in my blogging adventures I try and stay within the confines of a particular subject.

    My question is: Do most readers prefer reading a blog on one particular subject or is it OK t jump around as far as content goes.

    I ask because I believe there must be more people like me who read particular blogs because they centre around particular subjects.

  15. I hear “Best of 2010” lists are popular. (Please don’t actually do any of those :))

    What are your thoughts on this change in blogging that Twitter, Tumblr, and Posterous have brought?

    What I usually write about whenever I start blogging again or when people want to hear a rant from me is how these people usually are foregoing developing a home base to growing their own ideas and identity in order to play in the sandbox where all the other people are. There are a few people who do a great job turning Tumblr and Posterous into the place where their identities flourish and where they share real ideas day after day, but that’s more the exception rather than the rule I find.

    Do you want to blog more? Or have you considered switching to a Poterous/Tumblr site?

  16. Hi Peter,

    At the outset let me introduce myself. I am S. Sreemahalakshmi from India working with The Hindu in New Media. A part of my profile is to launch microsites of our companies’ events and market and sell tickets online for ticketed events every year. I would like to thank you because, I found your site useful, I got tips on how to market events and e-tickets in social networking sites at practically nil cost and also boost my ticket sales.

  17. I agree. My blog has become less fun since I’ve delved into the Twittersphere. It’s like writing a term paper vrs. a quick burst of freedom. The format seems too long and out-dated on the cusp of the pending new decade.

  18. I’m totally with you. I was never as frequent a blogger but I rarely update my TypePad blog anymore (though I still pay $8.95 a month) and more frequently Tweet and post tidbits to a Tumblog.

  19. Peter, I found my way here via @steverubel on Twitter when he posted your link yesterday asking what we think about blogging, and if we still do and how often.

    The landscape has certainly changed with the growth of social platforms such as Twitter, Facebook, etc. This diversification has allowed people greater freedom to express themselves in different ways, but shouldn’t denigrate the blog. In my view, it actually provides an opportunity for the blogger to create multiple channels – for example, use Twitter for the quick insights or link posts, and use the blog for “longer” posts to share your thoughts on specific topics. Integrating the two offers a way for people to find you more easily – cross posting new blog topics to Twitter and integrating your Twitter feed on your blog for example.

    Personally, I blog infrequently – this can be a few posts a week, to one post every few months. It really depends if I think the issue is something I feel passionately enough to add my thoughts to.

    I consume feeds differently now also. I use an RSS reader on my iPhone to keep up with important blogs. This ensures I don’t miss posts from people who write like I do – occasionally – as well as blogs which post numerous articles every day. I use Seesmic to keep up with Twitter and Facebook, as well as have a select few lists within Twitter to keep an eye on key people I like to listen to. This helps separate the signals from the noise.

    Bottom line for me – we need to move to keep up with the changes in publishing platforms. It’s fluid, but we can leverage each platform to deliver our key messages effectively.

  20. Blogging is 4 me; creativity, expression, love, passion, exhaustion, learning, studying, headaches, exploiting an idea or trend or topic, outcry, having a record in time (my ideas & thoughts).

    If I had to narrow it down; I write not for the sense of writing, but for the experience and incredible learning curve.
    I blog because I am.

    Very simple.

  21. Indee, blogging (on WP,TP,Blogger) is not the same platform as Tumblr or Posterous. The last two platforms attract a decent amount of established bloggers, but an amazing new crowd because of their simplicity to average people – who do not want to deal with options craze and ubiquity of themes and settings in WP.

    It is the simplification of technology which attracts the new new customer base, the baby boomers, the +30 not-tech-crowd, the average people with an average of below of average IQ, but high EQ.

    This is what made the Wii a hit, the iPhone, the iPod, etc. … it’s the easy approach of things.

  22. Every channel has its functions. Blogging: good making contents capacity and poor sharing options. Twittering: very good capacity of sharing messages instantly and poor, very poor, in building contents up. Posterous or Tumblr, are looking for efficiency: one click and you can publish mostly everywhere. And Facebook?: they try to recreate all in one. But listen it: blogs are on the basis, because contents ( and of course sharing them) are the main point in this 2.0 world.
    TITLE: Satisfying Saturday: Commenting to 17 Bloggers
    BLOG NAME: AriWriter
    DATE: 12/29/2009 11:16:15 PM
    Despite top 10 prediction lists for 2010 and Christmas content bogging up the intertubes over the past seven days, my eyes wandered over many fine blog posts and commented on a fair number of them. For my second installment of Satisfying Saturday, I sh…
    TITLE: Am I going to post on this thing?
    DATE: 12/21/2009 12:15:08 AM
    Kate and I were lamenting last week that we just havent had the umpf lately to post something worthwhile. When we are putting our creative thought in to our work, we are stuck on Twitter, Facebook and wherever else we can spend attention like th…

Leave a comment

Comment now or forever hold your peas

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.