I took a look around for an article that I wrote today for ReadWriteWeb on new models in Web publishing and was glad to see that blogging is far from dead. Indeed, it is evolving rapidly into some interesting new forms and I wanted to take this opportunity to review some of them with you. If you want to read more or share your thoughts, click on the link above.
We certainly stand at a crossroads, as we move from the “golden age of blogging” into whatever we are going to call things this year or this moment. I tend to think of this as the post-blogging era.
Jeremiah Owyang wrote on his blog last week that all future blogs will have something different, such as new mixes of media, different kinds of long-form content, and new opportunities for different kinds of celebrities to shine.
It used to be one point of view per blog, but that has changed, particularly as blogs (such as RWW) have grown and added professional journalists. Even tying yourself to a particular high-touch staff isn’t needed anymore: look what happened over at Engadget.com when Patel and Topolsky and others left the site last March. Sure, traffic took a small hit initially, but pageviews bounced back up.
What we mean by “long-form” content is changing too. It used to be a 600 word post was brief, now that is considered long. My post on RWW was more than 1100 words: that was really long! Same is true for videos: three minutes is now the cutoff point.
Data-drive analysis is now more important than ever. Adrian Holovaty changed the nature of daily journalism by transforming a collection of soldier Middle East war deaths into a searchable online site for the Washington Post, and now other newspapers have programmers to assemble their own curated data collections.
And then there is DocumentCloud.org that is used by a large number of blogs and traditional media to show the sources behind their reporting. You click on the button at the top of each article, and then yellow highlighted text appears that has hyperlinks to the original source materials. Think of it as when you had to show your work in high school math class. It is an intriguing idea.