Blogs and their role

Right, I need to think about this more but I just want to pen it down before I forget.

Just watched an interview/documentary with Salam Pax who you might know of. Pax is a pseudonymous blogger from Iraq who, since the invasion in 2003, has become notorious with the media. He’s an intelligent, thoughtful person and his blog(s) demonstrated the before-and-after affects of the Saddam regime. It also showed how one man could affect traditional news media. His situation was, and still is, more dramatic and stark than 90% of bloggers so the fact he stood out from the pack isn’t surprising. He was the only Iraqi blogging about the war: what better, what purer insight into life in Iraq during a war than from an Iraqi himself? It was a taste of freedom for him, and for us provided a taste of the regime which had ruled and ruined his life for so long. Not even the BBC could have provided that.
I just find it really interesting. Blogs are evolving so quickly (they’ve certainly changed and matured beyond measure in my short time fiddling around with them). Channels, sets or groups of blog-types are forming. Initially, most people simply used the format to write about their mundane lives. “I went shopping. Shopping sux lol” is about as interesting as they got.
Specific blogs about specific subjects are appearing everywhere. Shiny Media, who sort of employ me indirectly for The Googly, have launched loads of blogs recently: ones about rugby, weddings, technology for girls and others. It is this focus and subject-specific nature which will drive blogs onwards, and I’m not just saying that because I only blog about cricket!

In the dot-com explosion, one of the key phrases which was born – and one of the few which still apply – is “content is king”. This applies to blogs more than any other immediate news form or publication – and yet, suddenly, it the time-sensitive nature of blogs which has caused them to explode. “When was that posted? 2 minutes ago? Christ, that means Salam is actually there“. “Last posted 5 days ago. Shame. Looks like this blog is dead.” The immediacy of the format is quenching people’s thirst for news and comment, and the media have caught on. Just look at the Guardian’s Comment Is Free…
I need to explore this, if only for myself, so expect more ramblings in a few weeks time. I’m urgently seeking sponsorship for this season, as I’m struggling to afford to keep the site running, so need to explain why I’m so passionate about a free/open news medium such as blogs. On that note…

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