When I first started blogging in September 2006, I soon gathered a list of other blogs that I considered worth following. Almost without exception, these were what I would call “personal blogs”, that is, blogs written by ordinary citizens like me about their daily lives and interests. The bloggers themselves were a mixed bunch, male and female, old and young, often with quirky outlooks or fascinating stories about themselves and their experiences. This group of bloggers read one another’s posts and wrote comments to them, sometimes picking up one another’s topics for posts of their own. There grew up a feeling of friendly community among us.
How did we find one another’s blogs? We did this mostly by clicking on the links in one another’s blogrolls. This was also the era of the blog directory, sites to which bloggers could sign up and list their blogs for others to find.
Sadly, that happy time has passed and the world of blogging has greatly changed. The bloggers I knew dropped out one by one as life, work and circumstances took their toll. Then came “social media” in the form of Facebook and Twitter and their various emulators. Some bloggers found it easier to transfer their activities to these channels and spare themselves the relatively hard work of writing readable blog posts.
Blog directories also changed. Some disappeared entirely while others were bought by organizations whose main interest was to make money while offering very little in return. Over the last few days I have been looking at such blog directories as still exist and reading subscribers’ reviews of them. There is not one to which I would trust my blog.
Finding personal blogs worth reading is now quite difficult. Sites that list blogs are interested only in what you might call the professional blogs, those that deal with business, fashion, finance, lifestyle, etc., in short, those blogs that specalize in telling people how to lead their lives. It seems that the sort of people I metaphorically rubbed shoulders with in the blogosphere a decade or so ago now find it easier to dash off a couple of sentences on Facebook than to take the time to compose a well written blog post.
Everything changes, of course, and it is as useless to fight change as to forbid the tide to come in. The choice is to adapt or to dig in one’s heels and be washed into a backwater. As it happens, I feel fairly comfortable in my personal backwater and think I will abide here for a while. Give me a wave as the tide whisks you past!