Monday, July 16, 2007

ten (or more) years of blogging

According to this WSJ article, blogging is ten years old. The author credits Jorn Barger as being regarded by many as the first blogger, a reputation which is somewhat deserved, even if not strictly true, since Barger's Robot Wisdom Weblog is perhaps the quintessential example of the type.

If you care to split hairs, this piece by Jason O'Grady offers evidence that others began blogging before Barger.

You couldn't prove it by me, though. My first such efforts came in 1998, a year after Barger, although still before the term "blog" became commonplace. I tried again, beginning in late 2000, but my heart really wasn't in it, possibly because so much of my energy went to fine-tuning the HTML and CSS that I lost focus on the content, whatever little focus I'd had to begin with.

I've always been more into conversation than soliloquy, albeit with mixed feelings, since it's all too often the case that what I want to talk about either is of no interest to others or others have trouble wrapping their minds around it. So if, as regularly happens, I've got something particular on my mind, I have to be prepared to go there alone, and, if I'm going to do that, it might as well be in a blogging context instead of within an nominally conversational environment.

You might be wondering, if I'm so into conversation why do I have anonymous comments disabled? The answer to that is that, for me, dangling a conversation off a blog post is like putting the cart before the horse; it's backwards; the conversation comes first, or ought to.

There is, of course, a conversation that goes on among bloggers who read each others blogs, but participating in that takes more time than I have to give to it.

So here I am, just one of millions, tossing my pearls to thin air (or worse before swine, for all I know), hoping that if I have anything of value to offer it will take hold in a few minds and spread out from there.

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