What does a blog do in 2014?

  • Like all people with blogs, in 2014, mine has been going through an identity crisis.#

  • How we got here#

    • 1. My blog used to have long messages and short ones. The short ones have gone to Twitter. #

    • 2. I get better "engagement" on Facebook, so I post there.#

    • 3. I have a linkblog, and I have Little Cards. #

    • 4. I do podcasts.#

    • 5. There's always new stuff I'm trying out, and sometimes some gain traction. There should be a place for these too.#

  • Organizing randomness#

    • Today there are lots of ways to scatter all kinds of stuff to the wind. If you do a search on a person, you'll get a lot of random stuff, but for most people there's no single place that represents the person.#

    • So for me, until further notice, my blog is where all my scatterings come together. Usually it'll just be stuff that I've created, but occasionally I'll point to something from someone else that's connected to what I do. For example, yesterday I pointed to an improvement a user made to River4. Since I wrote River4, I am proud of this accomplishment, and want to have it be part of my record.#

  • Google-plus was supposed to this#

    • In the grand plan of Google, the default search engine, each person was supposed to be represented by that person's Google Plus profile. But it didn't work, just try a few searches for people and you can see. Google Plus profiles, when they do show up, are pretty lean. They aren't gardens that people invest a lot of energy in. #

    • For people famous enough to have Wikipedia pages, they serve pretty well, but it doesn't keep you current on the person, and the profile must adhere to the strict rules of Wikipedia. But I'm also interested in the highly opinionated version of the person, presented by the actual person.#

    • Jonathan Glick pointed out that this is something like what RebelMouse proposes to do. But if that was their goal it fails the Google test too, it doesn't turn up that often near the top of searches for random people (assuming they have profiles on that site). And as was pointed out by Dan Gillmor, it's not something you want companies to use the usual ad-based revenue scheme for, because that inevitably suffers from the problems of Twitter, Facebook, Instagram et al -- too much scattering. The one place, for people who care enough to have a place, has to be independent of tech industry business models.#

  • It can work#

    • If we can get some hooks into the big services that people use, or take better advantage of the ones that already exist (I'm just one person, for now at least) this can work. We can have a blog be a person, while that person maintains a presence in a lot of different places. #


Last built: Sun, Sep 14, 2014 at 10:51 PM

By Dave Winer, Friday, August 15, 2014 at 9:03 AM. What a long strange trip it's been.