… it is certainly connected to and yet different from networks like Facebook and Twitter. Case in point:
I’m writing this post because I saw Rebecca Howard’s Twitter post about Jeff Rice’s blog, which then pointed me to this ReadWriteWeb post, “Is Blogging Dead?” And this is a question, btw, that the RWW folks answer (basically) “no,” and comments ensue. And, because I think this is interesting and it will tie in with a class I’m teaching right now, hosted here using the blogging software wordpress. And I will probably alert people that I have made this post by posting a link on Twitter with a #fb tag, which then will in turn also post it to my Facebook account.
So what I mean is this: Blogs, Facebook, Twitter, and all kinds of other Web 2.o/social networking/whatever you want to call it software is obviously connected, related, and increasingly redundant. I’m preparing for a course called “Technology for Teaching and Learning,” which is mostly a hands-on workshop where we’ll learn about all kinds of different tools (Google stuff, blogs, Twitter, Facebook, podcasting, videocasting, wikis, etc., etc.) and talk about how this stuff can (and sometimes can’t) be part of good teaching practices. As I am going through these various tools, it strikes me how they all do very similar things in interestingly subtle ways. You update your status on Facebook, you update it on Twitter; why both? And yet, that’s exactly what lots of people are doing now, including me.
But they are also different, sometimes in subtle ways and sometimes not. And this is one of the main reasons why I don’t think blogging is going to be dead anytime soon, much in the same way that I don’t think video or audio is going to replace the written word anytime soon (notice I didn’t say print on paper– that might be a different story). Alex Reid kposted something about this (well, the way I’m thinking of it right now at least), about digital video and scholarship, where he wondered what the role of video is as a means of delivering scholarship in comp/rhet. Why are there so many books and journal articles out there about web 2.0 stuff, not to mention video and film? Well, besides the academic capital issue, I think it’s because it turns out that these rather traditional forms actually are the best ones to sometimes articulate and reflect on ideas both big and small. Not in an either/or sense, but in a “use the right tool for the job” sense.
I guess where I see this in my own blogging/facebooking/twittering is this: Facebook and Twitter is for posting links and for posting about “being” on a day to day basis; my blog is a place to write out something more– not necessarily “thoughtful” per se, but more reflective. In that sense, I think that one shift that is going on in blogging in relation to these other medias (and perhaps why some think that blogging is “dead”) is that the diary aspect of blogging– I’m about to go mow the lawn (a true statement, btw!)– is much more effectively presented via Facebook/Twitter. So maybe the diary blog is a dying off, but that’s okay, I think.