Nick Carr asks “Who killed the blogoshpere?“. In an excellently constructed piece he laments the blogosphere and compares it to Ham Radio‘s which, oddly enough, while once being the domain of the über geek back in the day, still have over 3 million registered operational users, which is double what Technorati believe is the current number of active blogs.
Nicks piece was obviously spurred by a piece on The Economist, “Oh, grow up : Blogging is no longer what it was, because it has entered the mainstream“.
The piece in question was very obviously written by somebody who doesn’t know his (or her) arse from his elbow and probably couldn’t find either in a dark room with both hands and a flash light.
Why do I claim this? Well all you have to do is read the piece! Once you see a statement such as:
messages, usually sent from mobile phones, are fewer than 140 characters long and answer the question “What are you doing?”
The emphasis is mine! Yeah, obviously what we are dealing with here is someone who vaguely keeps abreast of social media happenings but has no “real” experience of the tools they are talking about.
Don’t get me wrong, I have the deepest respect for Jason, even if he is the man I love to hate and considering that I’ve only ever agreed with him twice in recorded history, but his leaving the blogosphere was NOT a major event.
It was comparable to a mouse fart of the Richter scale and one still has to question if he has actually departed the b’sphere considering there are at least 8 (at time of writing) posts on his blogs since his “retirement”.
But what of the blogoshpere? Is it dead?
It may have reached a plateau, but to call it dead is like saying that Elmer has truly beaten Bugs.
What we have at the moment is an issue where the entirely insular English speaking blogosphere is only paying attention to the English speaking b’sphere.
Worse. Those insular idiots are mainly looking only at the portion of the b’sphere that stems from the US.
The fact of the matter is this: English speaking people make up a small portion of the online world (about 29% and dropping). The US is only a small portion of that, already small portion, of users.
As the rest of the world comes online we will have to deal with the fact that the blogosphere will grow, not just as a medium but in diversity.
Not only will it grow in diversity, but I am fairly certain that we will find blogs written in English becoming the minority. The future is not the US or European markets. It’s the unsaturated Indian and Asian markets, which already boast a large numbers of online users as we have but at a fraction of our population saturation.
Is blogging dead? No!
Just like Ham Radio operators have had their day (but are still more numerous than ever) blogging isn’t going anywhere. It’s just shifting its emphasis from the US market to the rest of the world.
This shift is not because US bloggers are becoming any less active, but because the rest of the world is becoming more active.
Advertising agencies will have to wake up and realise this reality before long. It’s a reality which I believe is already starting to affect blogger’s wallets as advertisers have to figure out where they want their adverts displayed.
This is a harsh reality that bloggers like you and I will will have to deal with.
Some of us already do.
Do we blog in English or the language of the country we live in? Do we tie ourselves to a single b’sphere or try to engage it all?
As other languages supersede English on the net, do we try to make those our primary blogging languages in search of an extra buck or 20 or do we focus on our established market?
I already speak 4 languages. Am I prepared to take on another 2 just for blogging?
Is the blogoshere dead? No!
It’s just shifting focus, to where the people are.