Stuart at Tech Digest writes an interesting opinion piece entitled “Facebook is killing personal blogging” in which he argues that personal blogging services have lost favour with their target audience who now prefer to use Facebook.
He cites the seeming demise of Vox and Twitter, both decent services set up to allow anyone to blog, or micro-blog, their personal lives:
My friends and I have basically dumped personal blogging and micro-blogging in favour of posting status updates, joining groups, and sending each other virtual fish. And I don’t think we’re the only ones.
I know a number of people who still run a “proper” personal blog, but, as Stuart echoes, these are the people who have been blogging for at least couple of years, and have either signed up with the likes of Vox, Blogger, Typepad, Live Journal, or WordPress, or have gone all out with their own domain and hosting.
When it launched, Vox was all about getting your mum and less tech-savvy friends to blog without needing a certificate in geekery. It’s a great, well-designed, easy-to-use service. Yet my friends and family aren’t on Vox; they’re on Facebook. One of my aunts is on Facebook. They don’t want to blog, but they do want to be part of a social network that lets them communicate in bite-sized chunks of text or media.
It’s not so much that these other services are bad- it’s just that they’re no longer the preferred flavour of online interaction. Though, for many, the nirvana of blogging is highly interactive, it’s true that for many personal bloggers, there’s a sense of vacuum when you write something but no-one comments and it can seem as if you’re talking to yourself.
Facebook is, by nature, far more interactive, and given that many personal blogs are aimed at people the writer knows, it’s hardly surprising that the social networking site is winning.
it’s a strong sign that personal blogging is going to remain a niche in the grand scheme of things, and that Twitter faces a struggle to make good on its initial launch buzz.
Stuart isn’t saying that professional or niche blogging is dying – just personal blogging. Is that an issue or a problem? Those who want to share the minute details of their lives with those around will simply hop onto whatever services are the easiest to use and most popular. Maybe straight blogging just doesn’t cut it any more.