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Why You Blog

Blog break

March 28th, 2008

I wanted to let everyone know that….this is it! After compiling, coding and rereading all of the wonderful thoughts and stories you have all contributed to this blog, I have started writing my thesis! With all of your thoughts as the framework is it going to write itself!

I just wanted to thank you and tell you how much I truly appreciate you participation in this incredible experience. Check in for updates, perhaps more questions, and then at the end a link to the final product!

Thank you again bloggers!

Blogging FAQs

March 7th, 2008

I am looking for your help, one more time.  I have asked the questions that I thought really highlighted your personal views of blogging and the overall effect of blogging.  Now I am asking you to give me the frequently asked questions that you are asked by others OR that you think are key to understanding blogging.  I plan on using these questions to finish the loop of my thesis.  I have my own reactions to blogging, the history and studies done up until this point, and the narratives of bloggers themselves.  At the end of my thesis I want to be able to answer these questions using all of the data I created, and I want readers of my thesis to both do the same and ask themselves more questions…..hopefully leading to future research in this field.

Feel free to make them as simple and personal or as complex and overarching as you see fit.  This is going to be one of the last times I can gather narratives from bloggers about blogging.

Thank you again for all of your help and I look forward to hearing from all of you.  Again if you would prefer to email me, feel free.  And finally, if you blog yourself and think there is a way you could mention this blog, or specifically this post, please do so!  It is one of the best ways to up traffic, as many of you know, to get some mentions in other places.

Thank you bloggers

February 29th, 2008

I wanted to thank you all for your help on the last post, and in helping to create this blog with me. The answers to my five questions that I received were incredible. Not only do I have a list of new blogs to check out including The Sartorialist, Stephen Downes’ blog, sitdownstandup.com and Eater, but I am gaining real insight into what bloggers and blog readers think about this incredible phenomenon. To catch everyone up to speed, the 5 questions I asked were:

1. Do you blog? If yes, why? If not, why?
2. Do you read blogs? If yes, what is your favorite and why? If not, why?
3. Do you consider the ‘blogosphere’ a community? If no, why? If yes, what kind of community?
4. How does connecting with people online change the nature of interpersonal relationships?
5. Does becoming part of an online community and/or being a part of a new generation of writers change your thoughts on blogging? Why and how?

These questions really came from things I personally wanted to know and the result are outstanding. What I am doing now in terms of using my new found narrative data is coding your responses. In my first read through, I have found that nearly all of the responses can fall into one of two categories. The first is answers that highlight the individual, such as personal blog anecdotes, blog preferences, and just how blogs affect the specific person responding. The second category really highlights more universal answers, for example, how blogs are changing the internet, how the blogosphere changes relationships, and the universal nature of journaling to an audience.

I am excited to see where I can go from here. My next step is to begin finding themes, patterns and metaphors that bring all of the responses together and will help me narrow down my options for where to turn next. If anything like that jumps out for you, please let me know. Again, thank you so much for all your help and please continue to participate. You are the reason I am studying this and anything you have to share I am here to listen to!

Blogging about blogs

February 20th, 2008

Because this blog is meat of my senior communication thesis, I am really interested to hear what YOU have to say about blogging. I have created 5 questions that get to the core of what this blog, and my thesis, are really about. Please take you time and think about these questions and how they relate to your online blogging life. If you would prefer to email me your answers privately, please don’t hesitate to do so. If not, please feel free to respond right here on the blog to help stimulate other’s responses! I can’t wait to hear what you have to say! Thank you for helping me on my journey of inquiry and discovery!

1. Do you blog? If yes, why? If not, why?
2. Do you read blogs? If yes, what is your favorite and why? If not, why?
3. Do you consider the ‘blogosphere’ a community? If no, why? If yes, what kind of community?
4. How does connecting with people online change the nature of interpersonal relationships?
5. Does becoming part of an online community and/or being a part of a new generation of writers change your thoughts on blogging? Why and how?

Once upon a blog….

February 10th, 2008

Why you blog, what you blog about, and the story behind the two is fascinating to me. What is even more fascinating is the interest other bloggers have in this as well. CK, from CK’s Blog asked her blogger friends to discuss, via her blog, the greatest point of value received from blogging. Toby Bloomberg of bloggerstories.com created a new blog, after her first about marketing, just asking people to tell their blogging tales. And Michael Schaefer of deepblog.com added a section to his blog about first blog links and answers to the age-old question ‘why I blog’.

This idea of of collecting stories and anecdotes from bloggers everywhere seems to be a blogging phenomenon and is the reason that I started this journey in the first place. My communication program at GWU is very theoretical, somewhat antiquated and old school and all in all, as I have explained to my family, a program where we pretend the internet doesn’t exist. Because of this and my brother Noah’s incredible experience with his blog, I’ve come to the same place as CK, Toby and Michael. I have become intensely interested in the behind the scenes motivation for blogging.

Here are some of the things I wonder about: Do you blog about a specific topic? Marketing? Wine? Travel? Kids? Is the subject you are blogging about inherently connected to how you see blogs and what you see as their reason for being, or is what you blog about less important than the act of blogging? For me, blogging about blogging is where I see the roots of the blogosphere actually starting…FOR ME! Where do they start for you? Where does your blog fall on the tree?

I want to thank Noah and Alison for their comments. As I mentioned before, comments are the reason this blog exists. I want to start dialogues, get everyone to start thinking and make some really interesting discoveries about blogging WITH YOU! Thank you and please remember to comment here or email me privately with any thoughts you may have.

What is a blog? Can we agree on a definition for this thing all of us are doing?

February 2nd, 2008

It seems important, in terms of creating a dialogue amongst bloggers, the we synthesize our thoughts and feelings about what a blog is into one coherent definition. The internet is littered with technical and personal definitions. As this is a wordpress blog, I thought it would be interesting to include the wordpress defintion of blog, which is short to ‘weblog’ and is a term originally coined to describe a website used as a personal log, or journal. They note that most blogs include a way for readers to comment on what has been posted.

Is this your definition? Do you define blogging in terms of an online diary of sorts? Is it a marketing tool? An online fluid resume? Do you have multiple blogs that you define differently? Is it even important to define what a blog is as long as what the blog is about is clear enough for potential readers?

Why I Blog…

January 26th, 2008

I am on a journey of inquiry and discovery. I want to immerse myself in the blog culture and squeeze information from the community about WHY YOU BLOG and WHAT BLOGGING MEANS TO YOU.

This exploration is the culmination of four years of communication studies at George Washington University. As senior, we are required to conduct research and prepare a thesis surrounding any communication event of theory. Blogging is a part of my life with my brother’s blog and my mother’s blog. The journey their blogs have taken them on, and the journeys of all the other bloggers in the blogosphere fascinate me and have brought me here.

This blog is created for the sole purpose of creating a dialogue with and about bloggers and their blogs. Your help is imperative to my journey and any participation will be greatly appreciated. Feel free to comment on the blog, on your own blogs, or to email me privately with questions, comments, ideas or thoughts. As I said earlier, soaking up information is my goal and only you can tell me what blogging contributes to your lives.

Enjoy! I hope we can start a conversation we can all enjoy and learn from. Here are a couple of questions to think about:
1. Why do you blog?
2. What does your blogging mean to you?

Let’s talk about it!

If you’re interested, here’s the prospectus I created as a framework for my overall thesis.

Hello world!

January 2nd, 2008

This is just a test post to get things going.