You can always tell when it’s been a slow news day. There’s yet another provocative news story, pronouncing the death of email, or blogging, or Twitter. You name it.
Several weeks ago the New York Times wrote that blogging among young people was on the decline, according to research from the Pew Center’s Internet and American Life Project. Later, more thoughtful commentaries appeared, noting that blogging isn’t dead; it is just evolving.
The observation I found most pertinent is from GigaOm:
Blogging… has evolved into much more of a continuum of publishing
My experience, although far from scientific, is that blogging and tweeting have become part of a continuum of conversation. People choose the means of expression that is most comfortable, perhaps most convenient at the moment — the means that best suits what they want to say — and to whom.
With both my personal blog and my professional blog, I’ve been surprised by the number of comments that arrive via email rather than as comments posted directly in the blog. It takes an extra step or two for someone to contact me by email, rather than WordPress’ built-in comment forms. This suggests something about the person’s motivation.
The more thoughtful the comment, or the more it pertains to the writer’s specific business issues, the more likely it is to arrive in my email in-box, rather than appear as a public comment on my blog. More than once I’ve found myself encouraging the comment’s author to share it from within the blog, because I believed it would resonate with others.
I also recognize that, at times, people’s only recourse is to communicate with me via email, because the opportunity to comment on a post has expired.
Sadly, I’ve been forced to stop accepting blog comments within a month or so of posting a new entry, to avoid incessant spamming by the Eastern European link farms. Somehow I just haven’t been able to swallow the need to add a Captcha form, the automated alternative to fending off the spammers.
The fact that spammers have become so active says that there’s continuing value in blogs.
And then there was the message on 2/26 from prolific tweeter Jeremiah Owyang:
Tweet more than 20 times a day? You should blog. Pay yourself first.
No, blogging isn’t dead: it’s just part of a continuum of conversation options.