What About Blogs?
Friday, January 07, 2005

i recently got a mail from yehey.com informing me that they're accepting me as a web contributor and being one means that i need to submit articles in contribution to the site's content, at first i was having a hard time on what to write about but it suddenly came to me that one of the things that i could write about is blogging a very great discovery that has changed the way i view the net and so here it goes...

What About Blogs?

By: Chuck Baclagon

Blogs are a common catchphrase nowadays, not to mention a goldmine of sorts for those capitalizing on their prescience in the net. From adolescents to the head-honchos of the corporate world to political ideologues of various causes and affiliations blogs has served as an avenue of putting thoughts into action in these recent years.
A lot could be said about blogs and this piece is just but a humble contribution so as to serve the blogging community by rendering you a piece about blogs and the culture of blogging so that we'd all be more updated with this latest phenomenon on the arena of the world wide web.

About the term
To start with the term, 'blog' is basically derived from the technical terms weblog, a blog, is simply a web application that contains periodic, chronologically ordered posts on a common web page that is accessible to any Internet user.
It was originally coined as "weblog" by Jorn Barger in December 1997 the basic tenet of creating blogs is for the purpose of creating a continual tour of an individual's life within the Net so as to give out details pertaining to the actual life of the site's author.
While the shorter term "blog" could be credited to that of Peter Merholz who in April or May of 1999 broke the word weblog into the phrase "we blog" in the sidebar of his weblog which got the fondness of other like minded souls who've visited his weblog and eventually creating a new name for this forthcoming phenomenon that was to be blogging.
As usage spread during 1999 which was interpreted as a short form of the noun weblog and with the word being further popularized by the near-simultaneous arrival of the first hosted weblog tools: Evan Williams and Meg Hourihan's company Pyra launched Blogger a popular blog service provider that hosts weblogs under the tag Blogspot.
As of March 2003, the Oxford English Dictionary included the terms weblog, weblogging and weblogger in their dictionary.

How it all started
Precursors of the blogs could be traced back to the era of Associated Press newswires, to Usenet and e-mail lists that were created for running conversations with threads on a given venue of broadcast. But it wasn't until the mid to late 90s that such interaction that we have come to know as blogging came into what it is popularly known.
It began when Evan Williams in San Francisco figured out how to update his website by just typing text into a text box. Normally, the way to update a website, through the use of an HTML editor to edit the text and add HTML formatting, and then using FTP to upload it, to enable the new page to become available within the site.
But all that change when Williams introduced a newer method that allowed him to open a webpage, type text into a text box, click Submit, and it was instantly available as a webpage. Thus launching the common blogging method that most of us who're blogging are familiar with.
As it progress became one of the pioneers of the tools that make blogging more than merely websites that scroll. His most important contribution was the creation of which weblogs would to show that they had updated. Which was introduced when he created the Radio Userland blog tool.
Meg Hourihan could be noted for the development of the blog and its culture when she the co-founder of Pyra or blogger.com with Evan Whilliams, which was eventually bought by Google which along with LiveJournal, Xanga and the rest these blog hosting sites eventually spreadout and made blogging more accessible to a wider audience.

Blog Culture
Blogs basically run in all shapes and interests, from individual diaries to arms of political campaigns, media programs and corporations, and from one occasional author to having large communities of writers. There some that are maintained by single authors, while others have multiple authors. Many weblogs enable visitors to leave public comments, which can lead to a community of readers centered around the blog; while there are others that are non-interactive.
Like all cultural communities blogging has spawned into a burgeoning subcultural niche that spans into various culture since it was was as much about technology as politics, culture and arts as well as the proliferation of tools to run blogs and the communities around them connected blogging with various cultural and social movements.
For example there arewriters such as that of Larry Lessig and David Weinberger who used their blogs to promote not just blogging in specific, but different social models in general.
As well as other communities that advance their varying agendas, such as that of in early 2002, a number blogs began to spring up rallying to support the invasion of Iraq which are known as "war bloggers" that are primarily from the right end of the political spectrum, that includes the blog Instapundit into advancing mass support for the planned invasion of Iraq.
The role of blogs became increasingly mainstream in the arena of politics in 2004, as political consultants, news services and candidates using them as tools for outreach and opinion building. In the summer of that year both the Democratic and Republican National Conventions credentialed bloggers, to advance their political campaigns of both their parties and blogs became a standard part of the publicity arsenal, with mainstream programs.
Another usage of blogs came in the form providing independent journalism which became famous when Iraqi bloggers came into the limelight like that of Salam Pax, an Iraqi teenager, maintained a blog wherein he reported storise about daily life in Baghdad during height of the US-led invasion of Iraq.
Because of such marks on contemporary Merriam-Webster's Dictionary declared "Blog" as the word of the year in 2004.

Personal- It is an online diary or journal where people write day-to-day experiences, complaints, poems, prose, illicit thoughts and more, often allowing others to contribute, fulfilling to a certain extent Online diaries are often integrated into the daily lives of many teenagers and college students, with communications between friends playing out over their blogs.

Topical – A common blog type that focuses on a specific subject matter, often a technical one notable of which is the Google Blog which focuses on nothing but Google news.

Political- Another common kind of blog where often an individual links to articles from news web sites and post their own comments as well on the political/social issues that the above said article tackles. Many of these blogs comment on whatever interests the author as well as his political leanings.

Directory - Weblogs that are useful for web-surfers because they provide their collected numerous web sites with interesting content in an easy to use and constantly updated format.

Corporate – Focuses mainly on employees of corporations that are posting official or semi-official blogs about their work.

Photoblog - Digital cameras and broadband connections has made it ever easier to post and share photos on the web to share life experiences and the like to their audience whereupon the visitors could post comments pertaining to the photographs displayed.

To End
Blogs are a major part of the web, along with websites, email, instant messaging (IM), P2P file sharing, and so on because blogs makes it possible to carry out a conversation in public, with hundreds of thousands of readers. Another is that it enables a lot of Internet users to keep up with developments on the web. Lastly it provides independent self-expression that is available to anyone and that it makes it possible for an individual to speak out their minds in the global community of the world wide web.
It is the desire of this author that a lot more would become enlightened to the untapped potentials of blogging in all avenues of life. I suggest that if ever you are reading this that you should try setting up your own blog and experience it yourself because actually doing it is the best lesson that you could learn about blogs and how they work for you personally, there are a lot of blog hosting sites available if you'd search it in your favorite search engine so I suggest that its time to start blogging and joining the global community of individual and independent self-expression.


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