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Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Blogging is niche, and slowing, says RWW

ReadWriteWeb posts about Technorati's latest breakdown of the blogosphere and disagrees that the figures show blogging has become mainstream.

Here are the figures from Technorati:

And here's how ReadWriteWeb sees them:

Of those 133 million blogs that Technorati has indexed - guess how many of them have been posted to in the last 7 days? 1.1% of them, or 1.5 million total.

Just for context, 1.6 million people in the US have defaulted on their mortgages last year. In 2005 there were 1.6 million people around the world who could speak Esperanto. 1.6 million people went to the Minnesota State Fair last year.

Is blogging mainstream? Globally, fewer people are posting to their blogs each week than go to the Minnesota State Fair or speak Esperanto.... Trying to blog (as 130 million+ people have in the past 6 years) may be somewhat mainstream, but actually blogging does not seem to be so yet.

ReadWriteWeb goes on to say that:
Reading blogs is becoming increasingly mainstream and the line between a blog and another kind of website is growing increasingly blurred. Writing full length blog posts even as regularly as once a week is hard, though.
Too right. It takes considerable time and effort, which can be hard to sustain.
We expect that microblogging may become more popular than blogging, if it hasn't already! From updating your status message on Facebook or MySpace, to posting 140 word updates on lunch or politics on Twitter to offering truncated public religious testimonials on a site like Gospelr (Twitter for Christians) - there are a whole lot of people already microblogging, if you will.
I agree, as do a number of the notables who commented on the Technorati research. Here's Michael Arrington, founder of Techcrunch:
Microblogging platforms like Twitter and Friendfeed are the fast food equivalent of the blogging world, and continue to gain popularity because they let people update multiple times per day with 140 characters or less on what they are doing, how they're feeling, etc. Not only is microblogging a terrific method of self expression, the value of the raw data that's created is enormously important. The Twitter messages I read during the two presidential conventions gave me a good idea on how people reacted to the various speeches. It's not statistically relevant, but pollsters will be watching that data more and more closely over time.”
And here's New York-based venture capitalist, Fred Wilson (who has invested in the two microblogging sites he mentions):

“Blogging is getting easier and easier and some day, we'll all have blogs of one sort or another. Most won't look like my blog, maybe more like mytumblog or my twitter feed, but even more likely they'll look like something else.”

“Earlier this year I wrote on my blog [], ‘Honestly I am not envisioning anything other than this; every single human being posting their thoughts and experiences in any number of ways to the Internet.’ That's where we are headed and blogging is a big part of that.”

There's some really interesting nuggets in the Technorati State of the Blogosphere 2008 report. Well worth dipping into.

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