Why Blog? Published 2008-03-03

Is blogging all about YOU?

I ask this because I have been going through a period of questioning "Why Blog?". It seems that bloggers should be the poster children for selfless sharing of information and ideas. But is this altruistic motivation for real, or are bloggers self-obsorbed egomaniac who use their posts to inform others of their greatness?

I started this blog as vehicle for documenting my ideas and engaging in discussions. A while ago, I went through a period of frustration as reader numbers dropped. Not even my wife reads my posts. Do you write for your audience or is it for you?

Is the goal of blogging to inform, offer unique perspectives, or to provoke? Is the goal to cultivate a loyal following of readers or to contribute to a wider audience through such aggregators as Technorati?

I realize that there are many motivations for blogging. If you have an existing audience (e.g. a teacher or CEO), it makes sense to use blogs as a means of communicating and connecting with your audience. Within an educational environment, blogging is fantastic for giving students a chance to reflect, write, share ideas, discuss, and even disagree.

According to Technorati, there are 3,850 blogs about education technology. Why do these guys and gals blog? What are they contributing to the conversation that has not already been said by one of the other 3,849 bloggers? Or is that not important?

I ask these question as I get ready for EduBloggerCon - West Coast 2008 this Wednesday. I'll let you know what I discover!

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4 comments:

Bud said...

I've found that blogging IS all about me - or you, or whomever's doing it. THe wonderful magic of the whole thing, though, is that when I'm working things in the best possible way for myself - I'm helping someone else, too. And vice versa.

So I guess I'm starting to think about blogging as selfish selflessness. As helpful as that might be.

Welcome back.

A. Mercer said...

Oh, we're selfless and selfish. Embrace ambiguity. I hope you had a good time at edubloggerconwest08. I'm not recognizing you? Do you have a better pic, so I can place you?

rob banning said...

Bud - you are right. It is about me. It is also about being a part of a larger community. As trite as that may sound, I value my humble contribution and the ability to help shape the conversation.

In reality, being a part of the edu-blogger community is also a selfish act as it really makes such events as CUE, NECC, and other conferences more enjoyable for ME.

To modify Alice's suggestion, I am going to "embrace selfishness" especially when it helps betters the common good.

rob banning said...

Alice - thanks for the thoughts and also your mini-presentation on Diigo. As an avid Del.icio.us user I love social bookmarking and think all teachers should be using it.

Sounds like Diigo offers some real advantages (beyond being easier to type than Del.icio.us).

I will include a picture of me in my recap of EduBloggerConWest08.