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Blogging is a way of sharing opinions, trivia, and misinformation with no-one on the Internet. The term blog is a portmanteau of the term "web log" and use of the term is met with disdain, such as when a friend, expecting those around them to be interested in hearing of his blog, fails to notice that the average blog is about as interesting and as widely read as the shopping list on his refrigerator door. It's pretty much the same reception often seen when a companion at dinner claims to be writing a novel. Everyone knows it'll either be derivative or painfully pretentious - thus the subject of discussion is quickly changed.[1]

Blogs typically allow for readers to post comments, although for most bloggers the only comment they're likely to see would, in a somewhat off-topic way, be more interested in telling the blogger about hot girls and discount Cialis.

Blogging is traditional textual, although the advent of YouTube has seen the emergence of "vloggers". This is pretty much the same junk as seen on blogs, except with poor lighting, irritating music, and annoying messages asking viewers to subscribe. To a certain extent Podcasting can be a form of blogging, and has certainly provided a wealth of recordings to ignore.

Are all bloggers uninteresting failures who may as well be writing their blog posts on a beach at low tide?[edit]

Yes, yes they are.

They can't all be bad![edit]

Some bloggers actually succeed in attracting both readers and commenters. Notable bloggers include PZ Myers. Our own PalMD, and Ben Goldacre. Given low barriers to entry, and the difficulty in maintaining consistently interesting blogs, a blog actually worth following could euphemistically be described as an island of gold in a sea of shit.

What do they write about?[edit]

Anything and everything. The most successful blogs tend to have a specific focus, and ideally, a talented and insightful writer behind them. In most cases though blogs are on subjects of little interest or a rambling and embarrassing record of the random things that pop in to the writers head.

The rush to create blogs is comparable to the early website boom that occurred once people realized that they could have their very own place on the web. The notion of barriers of communication crumbling as intelligent people around the world shared information was quickly killed by the realization that the majority of people are utterly uninteresting, uninformed, and lack any trace of web design skills. Very much the same problem has occurred with blogging, since everyone can have a blog but very few people have a clue what to do and how to do it?

Pro tips: Creating a blog just because you can will result in a short-lived stream of crap. Create a blog if you have expertise or an interesting perspective on a field of interest. You may enjoy seeing your words "published" on the Internet, but quite frankly you're likely the only person reading them. The sole purpose your blog will serve is to accidentally show-up in search results and frustrate people who were looking for something good.

Who should blog?[edit]

Probably not you, unless you are in someway noteworthy or capable of writing insightfully on a given topic. Most people do not care that a random blogger is glad that Peter Jackson will direct The Hobbit or that they're annoyed by detergent adverts.

How do blogs become successful?[edit]

There are two basic approaches that can be used to gain recognition for a blog.

Write something people want to read[edit]

This method is beyond the reach of most people, but if mastered can lead to an exchange of links between fellow well-esteemed blogs, and people will link to the interesting articles found on the blog. Successful bloggers are also consistent in both topic and in keeping articles coming on a regular basis. On the subject of consistency, a "brain fart" blog in which the author writes about anything that crosses their mind that day tend to be very uninteresting unless the author is already famous or incredibly sexy. Blogs are more likely to retain a regular readership if there's a consistent focus - whether that be in the topic or style of delivery. This is pretty much how the traditional media works this way. As an example, The Economist would likely struggle to maintain a consistent level of readership if they randomly shifted their focus from international news to pictures of donkeys eating straw hats. Also, advertising works best when delivered to the target demographics, which is why HSBC adverts are common in The Economist yet rare in magazines specialising in amusing photos of donkeys.

Pro tips: If you were PZ Myer, would you be eager to exchange links with someone whose blog is a pile of crap that sees fewer visitors than a nun's lady bit? Develop a consistent theme, stick with it, and be prepared to do some serious work if you actually want your blog to be in any way taken seriously.

Whore your site anywhere and everywhere![edit]

This approach is far easier and carries with it the possibility of higher search ranking that will certainly lead to more people coming to quickly view the blog before leaving to find something worth reading. Keen bloggers will register on forums and wikis, ensuring that their blog is listed as their homepage. Bloggers will then look for any effort to mention their blog, and in the case of wikis will certainly write an article about their stillborn and idiotic blog.[2]

Vloggers function in a similar way, in that they look for any excuse to post a link to one of their misbegotten videos. For every hour spent producing videos, the average YouTube user spends sixteen hours shoe-horning their videos in to off-topic conversations and asking fellow YouTube users to exchange subscriptions.[3] Anyone considering this approach should sit down with their father, and explain what they're doing and why. On relaying the story, they see if at the end of the conversation the father can recall any reason why he was once proud of his son?[4]

Pro tips: Unless you're adding interesting content and not just your personal opinion on something that has happened then you're likely using your site as an outlet for opinions that your physical friends are tired of hearing. If the sole purpose of starting a blog is so you can have a voice then don't do it - just don't.

See also[edit]


  1. Everyone has a novel in them, as the saying goes. Everyone also has shit and tubes of goo inside of them, and like the novel, some things are best kept inside.
  2. See The Conservative Camp.
  3. Estimation based on the utter futility of these endeavours.
  4. This invariably will be a son, given that female bloggers are relatively rare but can compensate for poor writing by being the only female contact in the lives many a frustrated shut-in. Pictures of yourself drunk and hugging college friends help.