An article I read recently about the state of blogs, i.e., the current condition thereof – dead or alive – uses the term “convergence” to explain the diminishment of blog popularity. Convergence as in the mass uniform movement of users into a web world dominated by the conformist communities of Facebook and Twitter.
I wonder. If people have time for hourly chitchat in Immediacy Land, they also have the time to read blogs. But I don’t think they have the interest in spending it on blogs anymore. Everyone’s capacity for attention is stretched. Better to exchange a fast word or two (often vanities-based) than read or write an article where argument or story is developed.
There is a quality dilution factor to blogs. It’s difficult to blog every day. Especially when your audience dwindles to accidental passers-by. Blogs are also susceptible to the sameness that comes with convergence. Few stand out, and few are remembered. Their purpose is blurry. Some do stand out because the bloggers themselves are willing to work at ensuring their visibility and pageview counts. Or they specialize and cater their posts to a niche audience. Otherwise blogs are hobbyist or small business or family affairs or exchanges within a circle of friends and fellow bloggers, and any or all of those scenarios can fail too.
The diehards (I am likely one) blog for blogging sake. It is a writing compulsion (or more gently, a call to write) that brings me back to blogs. Do bloggers run on conceit? Or need or both?
Some blogs eventually wind down or gray out into archive status. For example, I’ll blow up my oldest one like a bomb. It will feel satisfying, like waving bye to an old car you drove too long.
That doesn’t preclude doing another one if ever the urge arises. But it won’t ever again be like writing a blog of yore. We’ve all thought about it too much and ascribe creepy reasons for doing it. We are our own enemies. It’s not as fun and immune from asking Why? as it once was.