Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Five Years from Now

I had posted a link a few months ago to a Christianity Today article on the high rate of bloggers quitting--more bloggers have quit posting than are currently active. This Side of Glory has a recent post on the same topic, asking if she would be blogging five years from now (Incidentally, her title is like the strange Bizzaro title of my blog).

On this quiet blogging week it raises a good question. Will I be doing this in five years? If you asked an Incan, the answer would be no--we'd all be dead or changed into some higher form of life (see here). Is keeping this up reasonable? A good use of time? Or will blogging be like pet rocks in half a decade?

Some possibilities:

1. Nothing will change.

This is unlikely. I didn't even know what a blog was five years ago. Five years before that, the internet was wild and wooly and dial-up friendly. Five years before that, few had heard about "web browsers" and MOSAIC, the first "killer ap" of the 'net was still being developed...for UNIX. Things change, and fast.

2. Blogging will be a fad after all.

More likely. Fads come and go, and five years from now many folks will probably have home entertainment servers piping mp3s to their stereos, movies and tv shows off the net to their home theaters, and more and more emailing and such from PDAs and phones. Sitting at a box in the home office browsing the net my indeed be waning in popularity as the net becomes integrated more and more into other appliances.

3. Cream will rise to the top.

Noteworthy and popular blogs will continue, and the amateur blogger will fade away. Blogs will be web-based extensions of marketing and publishing for professional writers and journalists. More old media sites will make extensive use of their staff and freelance writers' blogs. Blog readers will serve as the new newspaper, essentially.

4. Something else will happen, of which I cannot conceive.

This is the most likely option.


  1. Dixie said...

    In a way I find it a bit depressing at how quickly things come and fade away. I love technology and I certainly can be accused of being a gadget gal (as I sit here with my bluetooth headphones, viewing and participating in an internet meeting, as well as posting on a blog). But...obsolescence, almost before things first hit the shelves, takes the fun out of being a gadget gal!

    Look at audio media storage. In my life time I will have seen the demise of the AVAD (analog vinyl audio discs--45's & 33 1/3), reel to reel tapes, 8 track tapes, cassette tapes, CDs and DVDs...and possibly digital media like mp3s. That's a lot of change in one life time. And a LOT of expense associated with that change...but I guess that is what feeds the capitalism machine.

    When blogs die...there will be a replacement. I just can't imagine what that replacement will look like. True visionaries can, though. We'll see what they come up with.

  2. Mike Baker said...

    Let's not forget about those things that started between 5 and 15 years ago that the pointy-headed experts told us would be "temporary fads" that would eventually be abandoned or replaced. chat rooms, cell phones, special diet books, SUVs, the VW Beetle, plastic surgery, speed dating, karaoke, expensive organic food, TVs in cars, bungee jumping, video games, etc.

    Never underestimate the power of the universal preservative that is narcissism.

  3. orrologion said...

    I have often thought that individual bloggers should go the way of the dodo and be replaced by essentially an electronic magazine of numerous contributors where the editorial 'brand' of the blog is maintained over time while the particular bloggers change. This protects blogs from doing dead and giving up their audience when they get bored or sick of blogging.

    For instance, a group of similar Lutheran pastors and laity should create a common blog to contribute to; similar Orthodox bloggers should do the same.

    Of course, this requires less vanity than the average blogger (inlcuding myself) has - vanity and opinionated egos seem to drive most blogging.

  4. Rev. Eric J Brown said...

    I do have my personal blog - and my friends have them, and we use them as a place to give updates to our friends who are scattered. I think that type of usage will continue - it's a development of e-mail and letter writing. Write one mass letter to everyone.

    As for "blogging" as a major source of news and opinion. . . the cream will rise. Many people do it to garner attention - look at me, look at me, I can influence people -- and then, when that doesn't happen. . . they will fall away.

    The same thing happened with "websites" 10 years ago. You could have your own, personal webpage. And no one comes. So you stop working on it.