Following are several definitions of what some dictionary sites define as a “blog.”
- a regularly updated website or web page, typically one run by an individual or small group, that is written in an informal or conversational style.
- add new material to or regularly update a blog
- a website containing a writer’s or group of writers’ own
- experiences, observations, opinions, etc., and often having images and links to other websites.
- 1995-2000; shortening of weblog
- a Web site on which someone writes about personal opinions, activities, and experiences
- a Web site that contains online personal reflections, comments, and often hyperlinks provided by the writer; also : the contents of such a site
A blog (short for weblog) is a personal online journal that is frequently updated and intended for general public consumption. Blogs are defined by their format: a series of entries posted to a single page in reverse-chronological order. Blogs generally represent the personality of the author or reflect the purpose of the Web site that hosts the blog. Topics sometimes include brief philosophical musings, commentary on Internet and other social issues, and links to other sites the author favors, especially those that support a point being made on a post.
It is obvious that there is a general consensus that any of the three categories are sufficient to describe one. However the short, four letter word with just one syllable seems to be the favorite or “fav.”
“The English language is a language of economy.” So it has been described by a relative of mine whose first language is Spanish. Considering all the “slang” expressions that have evolved over the years, it’s not hard to understand how another culture might see it that way.
Well, maybe in fact it is! In a real sense blogging and bloggers who blog are taking a significant shortcut or economic detour to the centuries old domain of publishing. Writers, such as yours truly, may never gain the personal importance or talent to ever get a major publishing contract.
Because of the internet, that has changed forever. Anyone who can put their fingers on a keyboard, can blog and make their thoughts, rants, complaints, joys, accomplishments known to all who care to read about them. Grammar, organization, spelling, Chicago style or AP don’t matter in the least, as is most often, and sometimes painfully, obvious.
There seems to be a trend however, that those bloggers may be responsible for. Readers are no longer content to let editors or publishers, determine what they read. Now stop and think about that for a minute. What does that mean?
Bloggers have something to say, and quite frankly many have messages full of feeling, thought, with amazing content worth the read. There are no add campaigns or flashy photos to promote their message to the masses. In most cases it just floats around in cyberspace waiting for some unsuspecting “websurfer’ to enter a keyword that hits on an article a particular writer has listed. Bingo! A new writer is discovered.
You can bet that there are those who have refined blogging to an art form, and have made good money by doing so. As with all things, compared to the number of bloggers, those who have flourished are in the great minority.
I blog or write because I have to. That doesn’t mean someone is standing over me with a club to do so…well at least not in the physical sense. Rhetorically speaking I have lots to say about many things and that is my “club” or my “what.” That “what” is not necessarily and opinion, as I make no claim to having superior knowledge about the things I write. Even those areas where my knowledge may be greater due to experience, thoughts in those arenas are still just thoughts.
The point is that blogging has taken on a life of it’s own, and is the new format for many writers to self-publish. Some blogs have been turned into eBooks and published in a more concise format. You can find blogs on nearly any topic you can imagine, plus many you never even thought of. Take the craziest subject you can possibly imagine, like square doughnuts.
Now for years I made a decent living making regular donuts, and have been more than happy eating those beautiful, golden, round bits of fried dough that depending who makes them, can melt in your mouth.
Doughnuts can be found with few exceptions in every shape and flavor imaginable. There are Long Johns, Bismarks, Twists, Bowknots, cake donuts, and the list is endless. But square doughnuts? Who woulda thunk there was such a thing? Go ahead. Type that into Google, and you’re gonna get 23 million links for “square doughnuts!” I don’t know about you, but to me that’s crazy!
To me that might be as crazy as an upside-down ice-cream cone! Yup! There are 488,000 links on Google for that! Let’s see, what other crazy idea can I come up with? How about the needle in the haystack that was found? That too! Over 500,000 links where people have actually done it.
So the point here is that blogs are like written conversation. I may not know you, but we can get into each others mind, that is if you should happen to leave a comment to which I can reply. And if not my reply, someone else who may be lurking out there, reading and and creating a reply, or silently moving on with no reply at all. Ready to start blogging?