Just a few thoughts on the things we call blogs.

When Google Reader “moved out” I tried a few things. Feedly was too…pretty, I guess? I liked The Old Reader but the mobile interface was a little clunky, it kept marking a bunch of stuff as read that was not really read, and it kept having long downtimes. So far, for my money (which is zero dollars) CommaFeed is the clear winner. And by that, I mean it’s the most like Google Reader and it doesn’t do anything annoying. Yay, CommaFeed!

This weekend I spent some time cleaning up my feeds, moving uncategorized sites into categories and deleting ones I’m not really that into. I admit I had a few “hate reads” or “car wrecks” where I was really just reading for the pleasure of rolling my eyes, but I’m all cleaned up now and hopefully everything left in there  will inform or entertain me.

I used categories like food, laffs, Denver, style. I almost made a category for Trying to make this into a career.

Which got me thinking about the word “blog” and how I think we need some new terminology. At the minimum there’s a clear dichotomy between people who aspire to have some modicum of fame and fortune and those that aspire to connect with others with similar interests (be the interest triathlons or fashion or raising chickens). Obviously you can aspire to connect with folks and still hope your blog brings you a bit of fame and fortune, but either that’s a goal or it’s not.

[Anecdote! My friend recently started a daily outfit sort of blog. Her stated intention on her site is to share fashion ideas. Her stated intention to me is that she hopes to get a free pair of jeans. How wonderful it would be if we were all so authentic.]

I think what I want to say is that, broadly, there are online “Micro Magazines” and there are online “Personal Diaries.” If you have ads and giveaways and guest posts and you schedule content for maximum pageviews, then that’s all good and more power to you, but there should be a different word for that than what I’m doing here.

Let’s imagine a scale of 1-10 where 1 is my mom’s blogspot where she posts pictures of quilts she and her friends have made and 10 is the Huffington Post. Technically, these are both “blogs” even though they are vastly different publications. Doesn’t it seem like there’s a gap in the language if my wordpress site is in the same category as Gawker?


One thought on “Just a few thoughts on the things we call blogs.

  1. YES. I’m behind this etymological evolution and hope that I fall into a category that gets to shuck that horrible clunkfest, “BLOG.” Maybe “Scrap-e-book.” I’d totally cop to having a scrappy book.

    I might have to continue this thought on such.


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