Friday, December 30, 2005

The Year of the Blog

This will probably be my last post of 2005, so I just wanted to say a few things before the year ends. First of all, I'd like to thank Michelle for encouraging me to start a blog and for sharing in my enjoyment of blogging, even if she really isn't all that into it herself. I'd also like to thank MDS for encouraging me to blog more frequently and for stimulating discussions on Data Janitor with his comments.

I don't know if 2005 really was the breakout year for blogging, but it seemed that way to me. I'm not talking about my little corner of the blog world here because I'm not really trying to do anything special here. I was just looking for a new creative outlet and a way to stay in touch with people. I found that, but I also found myself getting involved in the community aspect of blogging, which was not something that I had expected. I can definitely envision a future where more and more journalists work independently and publish their stores in a blog-like format. Readers will be able to assemble a virtual newspaper using feeds from their favorite sources. I used to fear the demise of the traditional newspaper, but I'm now looking forward to it. I no longer buy into the argument that if you give people the option to pick and choose news stories on their own, they will ignore the stories and opinions that they don't want to hear or disagree with. My experience has been the exact opposite.
You can start off reading a single blog or only the bloggers who share your interests or political beliefs, but the blogs you read will inevitably link to other blogs or online media sources. If you like what you're reading in a blog, there's a good chance you'll check out the blogs it links to. If you like what you find there, maybe you'll start checking that blog out on a regular basis too. Before you know it, you're checking out several dozen blogs and reading about topics and ideas that you never used to be interested in. At least, that has been my experience.

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