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Should You Stop Blogging?

Some Think So.

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Wired has posted an already-controversial article about how blogs are "so 2004", and how services like Twitter, Facebook, and Flickr even are here to replace them. Writer Paul Boutin says:

Thinking about launching your own blog? Here’s some friendly advice: Don’t. And if you’ve already got one, pull the plug.

Writing a weblog today isn’t the bright idea it was four years ago. The blogosphere, once a freshwater oasis of folksy self-expression and clever thought, has been flooded by a tsunami of paid bilge. Cut-rate journalists and underground marketing campaigns now drown out the authentic voices of amateur wordsmiths. It’s almost impossible to get noticed, except by hecklers. And why bother? The time it takes to craft sharp, witty blog prose is better spent expressing yourself on Flickr, Facebook, or Twitter.

Update: Now that this article has had some time to circulate around and collect more discussion and more thought, I have to come right out and say, the notion that blogs are obsolete is a ridiculous one. There have certainly been some valuable points made about the problems with blogs, but just because there is room for improvement, does not mean that they’re dead or dying.

I would even go so far as to say that they’re just getting started. Yes, there is plenty of worthless content out there. I would personally say the same thing about television, but do I think television is dead as a medium? No (Granted, I do think there is some big change coming for TV courtesy of the online video revolution, but that’s another discussion entirely).

One reason why blogs are in no danger of extinction, is that their content is entirely "on demand" – meaning if you don’t like a blog, you don’t have to read it, and you can move on to another one that you do like. You can subscribe to the ones you enjoy and get all the content you want, and if you don’t like the content from one of those at any point, you can simply unsubscribe and stop reading it. If you have any complaints about a blog, then you have the choice to go elsewhere. Why is that a problem? Why would that signal the extinction? Because "elsewhere" could be Twitter or Facebook? I don’t think so.

Back to my original article:

Obviously, people have some things to say about that. So let’s look at some responses from bloggers:

At PureBlogging, I personally said: "Blogs are not obsolete. You know why? Because I still read them everyday. I still write for them nearly everyday. And so do countless others (that probably includes you). If you ask me, blogs are more relevant than they’ve ever been, because they are more mainstream than they have ever been."

Amit Agarwal at Digital Inspiration says
: "The advice published in the Wired story is equivalent to asking mom and pop stores to close shop as there’s a new Wal-Mart store in the neighborhood. True, the competition increases but both entities can still peacefully co-exist and survive well."

Eclectic Bill writes: "First, even though there are thousands of professional magazines out there, this has not stopped beginning and amateur writers from publishing their own magazines. And given the long tail of topics out there, there is plenty of room for both the professionals and amateurs in the blogosphere. And I find it a bit ironic that someone who claims that "text-based Web sites aren’t where the buzz is anymore" is writing for Wired.com which is largely text-based."

Not everyone disagrees with Boutin’s article though.


Canadian blogger Mark Evans says
: "It’s been about five years since blogs emerged on the media landscape. There are more than 175 million blogs – many of them well written, insightful and/or interesting but you have to wonder if blogs as we know them have had their day."

Some commenting on the Wired post itself say things like:

"I agree the blogging community is choked with too much commercialism and too many people trying to be the next big thing. Sometimes I wonder if people wish to have a little advertisements with their blog or a little blog with their advertisements. …"

and

"Yes, you are right, if your goal is to be seen, to build a personal brand, to surf a hype wave, then blogging is passé and it is time to move to other forms of social communication. In fact, and for most people, having a blog was the modern equivale…"

Wired and Boutin no doubt knew that this article would cause an uproar from bloggers, and you have to give them credit for some interesting linkbait. It certainly provokes discussion, and I’m all for that. So let’s continue that discussion. What do you think? After reading Boutin’s article, do you agree with him?

Should You Stop Blogging?
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  • http://www.e-commercewebdesign.co.uk Adam – Ecommerce Web Design

    I’m gonna give that article a read. I think there’s no doubt that the blggosphere is clogged with crap, but blogs certainly still have a place. As far as I’m concerned, Facebook and the like are more ‘social’ and informal than a blog. The blog format is more suited to formal presentation of news and opinion with discussion rather than inane banter.

  • http://www.business-supply.com Brad – Office Supplies

    While I admit that most blogging platforms and blogs themselves have become nothing more than a marketing tool, I think that it still has it’s place in today’s web based culture.

    There are still hundreds and thousands of blogs online that are still part of the true blogging experience in that they aren’t monetized and don’t promote any items.  Those folks blog about things because they enjoy it and it gives them a voice.

    I have a number of blogs about various topics that I still read on a regular basis.  I also subscribe to their RSS feeds so I can get a snyopsis even when I don’t have time to physically visit.

    Is blogging dead? Not in my humble opinion.

     

     

    • Chris Crum

      You’re right, and I would go further and say that there are also plenty of legitimate blogs that are monetized and provide a living (mostly via advertising) for those maintaining them.

  • http://www.paragonwealth.com Shannon

    Bloggers shouldn’t stop writing if they have useful things to write about. I agree that some blogs are used to promote companies or products. Those blogs aren’t useful, but the blogs that are written about useful topics are relevant and informative. I read blogs everyday and write about once a week.

  • http://cananitogudino.blogspot.com/ Cananito

     It has it’s yay’s and nay’s. I personally couldn’t belive me without my blog now, that’s where I express all my ideas plus the news I find so I can share it with my friends, microblogging only let’s me do once at a time, either give them the news, or express how I feel.

    I personally think thoday’s blogosphere is blog + microblogging, you can’t survive with just one, you have to be at different places at the same time…

  • http://www.darrelconceptsghana.com Rollins- Dtech Web Design

    Very Interesting! If just one article could generate this much interest and start a whole new topic of discussion, then I say "blog on".

    I’m gonna go with Brad’s comments-

    "There are still hundreds and thousands of blogs online that are still part of the true blogging experience in that they aren’t monetized and don’t promote any items.  Those folks blog about things because they enjoy it and it gives them a voice."

    Well said! There are several categories of blogs ranging from personal blogs to corporate ones. In the same way as personal blogs give people a voice, corporate blogs provide an additional marketing avenue for a company.

    Blogs are as relevant as they have ever been. Mr Boutin’s article for one, proves this.

  • http://www.localhawaiinews.com Ron – Hawaii News

    While there are a lot of worthless blogs out there, there are also some very excellant ones. 

    In another article here on webpro you mention the redesign of Yahoo to include top blog posts about the categorie of news you are reading, this proves the value and impact of blogs.

    Yaho and (Google) wouldn’t have such things if blogging were dead!

  • http://www.stocksalot.com Mike

    Flickr, Facebook, or Twitter are probably used for marketing purposes just as much if not more than blogs. Sure there are sites like sponsoredreviews where blog owners get paid to post about someone;s product or site but it represents a vry small fraction of the blogosphere. Besides I have done tesys and wordpress blogs have always been indexed and ranked better than satic sites. there are so many SEO assiting plugins that help in that regard.

  • http://www.passionoflife.net Edward

    Well, personally I think we should still blog. The purpose of blog is like writing your own diary. So, it is like a kind of release of frustration or just doing some rumbling online. Just like what my wife and daughter now having their own shared blog online talking about Passion of life.

  • http://www.diamondonnet.com/ Diamonds

    I agree that Blogs are crowded by crap but its easy to distinguish the good from the bad and the ugly…  What we are reading now is a blog, so why are we still reading it if we think this is not relevant anymore?

  • http://ecash10.com Ecash10

    Surely we all know there’s a lot of bad blogs out there but there still a lot more good ones…why?

    Because the bad ones eventually stop when the “not so serious” blogger ends writing.

  • http://www.innovativeeconomy.com Shane Lashley

    Chris – first, great blog and I really enjoy your work.

    As for Wired, this sounds like either linkbait or unbridled emotion driving the keyboard.  Blogging has changed in recent years but declaring it dead and old seems like a prediction that human nature is going to change this year. 

    Blogs can be compared to restaurants where conversation occurs.  They can have an ambiance, a personality and they can be appropriate venues for some occaisions and not others.  Declaring the written blog dead is like saying all Italian food or all Mexican food is out and only the cool people are eating at the new restaurant. 

    People like different venues for the same reason they like different foods: they enjoy them.  The same people can like different restaurants and eat at different places in the same week.  They can have intense busines lunches, hot dates and casual time at a Friday night high school football game.  Venues don’t become obsolete because new venues arrive.  Thinking of blogging as a technology and not a venue is an identity crisis for the speaker, not an relevance crisis for the venue.  I’ve got a ton of people contacting me at InnovativeEconomy.com about how blogging is helping them in commercial and non-commercial ways.

    • Chris Crum

      Thanks Shane, I like the restaurant analogy.

  • http://officialsafetyandsecurity.com Debbie Morgan

    Thanks, Chris, for bringing this up. Blogging is not just for self expression. Good, bad or indifferent, blogs are an opportunity to share ideas, thoughts and information.

    Besides, content is king on Google so anyone with a web site that they want to improve in the organic ranking will want some ever changing content on it. A blog makes perfect sense.

    Also, commenting on blog posts is a great way to get links back to your web site as long as the blog is do follow.  By the way, Chris, is this site do follow? Just curious.

    Thanks again. Keep writing!

  • http://www.thelostagency.com Dave

    i think the focus of blogs, has been to become more niche and focused, there are a number of blogs that i read occasionally and then their are the blogs that i make an effort to contribute to, and WebProNews is one such blog, that always has something interesting relevant.

    if i had a twitter, and hundreds of people following me i would be happy, but with some blogs having thousands of visitors daily, im sorry but it still appears that blogs are important.

  • http://www.petermonroe.com/2008/10/10/peter-monroe-on-fox/ Peter Monroe

    Obviously blogging still is useful.  People are making plenty of money with their blogs, and there is no reason why they should stop.

  • http://llcoperatingagreement.blogspot.com/ Joe

    The only way I can see blogs going away is if king google decides to stop indexing them.  And google owns blogger.com so it’s unlikely.  For me, the links generated within the blog that google folows and indexes are worth the effort regardless of whether people actually read what I write.  Is it harder to get heard in the blogsphere?  Of course.  But the little guy / ameteur at whatever can’t get heard in any other format so why should that be a problem?  Twitter and facebook, etc. are really not replacements for blogs.  I see them more as social interaction devices whereas blogs (although serving that same function) are about self-expression in more than 140 characters.

  • lmao

    Aww don’t stop! Then us grey hats can’t search for your WPMU and scuttle footprints :D

  • http://niche-traffic-sale.blogspot.com Niche Marketing Blog

    No it is not a ah-ha moment.

    More laughable

    Blogging is only just getting started.

    To say blogging is dying because of all those blogs with poor content out there is like saying we should stop buying shoes because of all those low quality cheap brands out there.

    The worth and success of a blog depens on the quality of content on that blog.

    If you have great, useful content and post frequently, your blog readership will grow

    Not sure what the debate is about now.

    • http://www.pay-fair.com Guest

      "… To say blogging is dying because of all those blogs with poor content out there is like saying we should stop buying shoes because of all those low quality cheap brands out there. …"

      No, it’s more like saying: Maybe you wouldn’t bother buying quality shoes if you had to look for days for them, because they were hidden between 1000′s of crappy shoes! 

  • http://allaroundus.blogspot.com/ PG

    I never understand ‘who’ declares these things…and why anyone should listen to them. For a start, Twitter, blogs and a Facebook profile can all be integrated with each other, (as my sites and feeds are) so they are not mutually exclusive. And it is a very narrow view of what a blog is and why it might exist. If no-one read my blog at all (and gratifyingly they do, in large numbers) I would still keep it, just as a visual and written record of my life, which is important to me if no-one else. It also ignores a vast swathe of largely female based blogs, concerned with crafting, home life, lifestyle, decor, which are certainly not dying and being used as informal networking tools to make friends and promote home based business. Blogs are simply evolving, and breaking out of the original mould; once they were the exclusive province of journalists and opinionists, now they are more mainstream. Is that a problem? Only if you make it one.

  • http://www.blog.lanzen.co.uk Neil Robinson

    Didn’t you talk about a blog sold for $2.2 Million dollars recently?

    There’s your answer if you’re looking at value…

     

     

    • http://sanibel-rentalsnet.blogspot.com/ Sylvia

      I just created a blog on Sanibel Island which provides a lot of information for vacationers that I can’t accomplish providing on my website.

      I link back to my website on our vacation rental properties but the blog is written to add value to a vacationer’s experience, not purely commercial in purpose.

      The blog, I hope, has good content, engaging photos and frequent updates.

      It won’t win any pulitzer prizes or create a devoted following of thousands of readers or be valued at 2.2 milliion dollars ever in its existence. 

      But if I can offer the service, get more people interested in my properties and in the Island, AND have fun doing this, why not?

  • http://www.trafficconnection.com/ Lou

    Sounds like the fellow that wrote the article is trying too hard to be the smartest guy in the room.  Blogging is no longer "cutting edge" but why should that mean it is no longer valuable?

  • http://www.f-blog.info/ FeRHaD

    No, we shouldn’t stop blogging, but in Turkey we have to stop. Two days ago with an odd decision of a Turkish court access to Blogger in Turkey is disabled.

    Now, all the Turkish blogs on Blogger without their owners own domain name are not accessible in Turkey. Also nobody knows the reason. This is against the laws but who can understand it.

    Only one blogger posts something inappropriate and than WordPress.com, blogspot.com … are inaccessible.

    We are planning to do something against these but we haven’t decided what to do yet.

    • Guest

      Write a blog

  • http://lamach-web-design.com/blog/ Paul LaMach

    Let’s see, a blog is an generated html web page, or pages. A blog is a style of web page. Do away with web pages? I think not. How the web page looks after it is generated is what is important.

  • http://onegreenplace.blogspot.com/ wittyguyftl

    Yes there are some blogs that are only spam and ads, but that is already been appearing on twitter and facebook also.  like any media, chose what you like, and ignore the rest.

  • http://www.stressreducenow.com Stressreducer

    Blogs have added so much to the Internet, a breath of fresh air.  Yes, like everything else, the marketers have diluted their value with tons of crap.  But once you find one that is valuable to you, bookmark, subscribe to newsletters, RSS feeds and anything else they have to offer.  There is passion out there on every subject.  Beware the fads, blogs will live forever.

  • http://www.g7uk.com/ Gary

    Did you know that this comment form doesn’t work at all in Opera?

    But on topic…

    Take the most exciting medium ever created (the web), with fantastic opportunities for layout and to combine text, images, audio and video. But then tell everyone that text is the main thing and encourage them to use content management systems, all of which look pretty much the same: two columns, three columns. With limited, difficult and boring options for including images, other media and ads.

    A system that prioritises ‘the latest’, regardless of whether that is the most interesting or relevant content that you’ve created over the years.

    Ease of use and accessibility for people who don’t want to (or can’t) learn HTML is put before creativity. It’s a system for people who want to shovel content onto pages as quickly and easily as possible.

    Surfers are getting bored with so many sites that all look the same. I predict a return to more static pages, with innovative (and tight) design. Yes it does take longer to give every item a different design. But if you’re organised, creative, know what you’re doing and have a system in place, it’s viable and a unique selling point in a world that all looks the same.

    If you’re interested in having a longterm presence on the web there is no future using here-today-gone-tomorrow services such as MySpace or Facebook as any part of your core operation. Get your own domain name and hosting.

    Yes it may seem as if Facebook will be around for ever. But does anyone remember GeoCities? The place where everyone created a page ten years ago.

    The other thing that Myspace and Facebook have in common with GeoCities is the horrible user experience: overloaded pages and servers. People are getting sick of that too.

    It’s rather like the banking crisis: there was a period when every rule that banks had operated under went out of the window. Lately we’ve done the same with everything we learnt as webmasters over the past ten years. Creativity has taken second place, pages are slow and overloaded. 

    For the man in the street, the novelty of being able to write, comment and upload his own videos hasn’t yet worn off. But I predict it will. No matter how easy you make it, creating anything is hard work and the majority of people would rather sit on their ass and consume. I know lots of people will squeal at this suggestion, but I’ve been involved in helping people create media for 25 years. I’ve seen lots of trends come and go, systems promted, and enthusiasm fade away every time, except for a very small core who continue.

    The financial crisis can only accelerate this, as many people realise they are making no money from blogging and look towards more profitable avenues.

    As for commercialism, if you look at the history of online, and particularly the adult industry (AVSes and TGPs for example), you will see that often something new comes along and eventually it is killed by people who introduce systems that ‘industrialise’ and flood it.

  • http://greenteth.blog.co.uk Boggart

    Blogs are changing in many ways. First I think a much needed weeding out of the "All about my crappy life" type very personal blogging. Then changes to the way Google rate us can favour the more web-savvy producer of decent quality content.
    Also as someone who has blogged for about 5 years I notice a change in the audience attitude. Though well down from the peak of 10,000 hits a day scored last year my analytics tell me the group of followerrs the humourous and satirical blog has gathered now tend to visit only once or twice a week but stay longer, hopefully to rad several posts.
    From my point of view this is a positive trend.

    Facebook, twitter etc. are good methods of self expression for people who are really not interested in writing but enjoy the social networking side of the web. The longer and more stuctured and carefully written posts may become a respected branch of literature in which many writers can gain a niche audience and continue publishing because expenses are low.

     

     

  • http://bodyrockin.wordpress.com/ Body-Rockin.com Blog

    But I finally started one this month and for me it’s not so much to spread my views but to get more traffic to my main website which is adult related and interest in adult content or topics doesn’t seem to be affected much by what ever else is going on in the world, folks will always be horny..economy or other issues or not.

    I don’t have the get noticed issue that much because I have built mty network that I can promote it to directly.

  • http://www.yougetalife.com linuxoverwindows

     

    i have had a myspace account for linkback purposes to raise some google rankings a while back and it worked.  but sites like myspace, twitter, etc are more commercialized than some blogs i have read.  i dont consider myself a blogger although i will make a page on my site dedicated to something i want to talk about but my sites are more than just a "blog" its more of a place where i try to bring fun content to the masses and now and then i have a story or 2 whether it be fictional or true.  my sites have ads on the bottom but its a single ad that changes on page load.  nothing obtrusive. 

     

    but to someone who would recommend everyone join flickr or facebook or myspace to get their comments out there, id say you, sir, are a n00b.  dont make me rofl.

  • http://www.theviewfromoutsidemytinywindow.blogspot.com Guest Reggie Greene / The Logistician

    I sure hope not, since I just started in April.  Additionally, I just attended my first blogging conference last week.  I believe that the potential of blogging has yet to be realized.  The vast majority of the public still does not really appreciate blogging.  Those of us who blog think that it is mainstream.  It has not yet reached that point.

    The technology is also improving, enabling users to do dramatically different things.

    Apart from the technology issues, it really is about the ways in which blogs can be used to advance the interests of the user.

    Some commentators called blogging the "fifth estate."  It has the potential to provide a voice (and therefore power) to a large segment of society who previously had gone unnoticed.

  • http://www.accreditedmarketing.co.uk/home.html Guest

    Ive tried blogging in a few outlets ,however not much traffic generated ,

    Where should i be blogging ?

  • http://www.commoditytradingaccount.net/ commodity trading advisor

    If anything, the blogs on Facebook, Myspace, etc. are the most impersonal and the ones drowning in anonymity.

  • http://www.ebiz-strategies.com Internet Business Strategies

    Blogging is a great way for users to interact with you and your site. No way is it dying.

  • http://www.thehamperandgiftpeople.co.uk gordo

    This can’t be true! Blogs serve as such a great way to get information from experts and non-experts. I hope they continue on….

  • http://madruhi.multiply.com bagus

    I dont beleive…i think the focus of blogs, has been to become more niche and focused, there are a number of blogs that i read occasionally and then their are the blogs that i make an effort to contribute to, and WebProNews is one such blog, that always has something interesting relevant.GBU

  • http://www.internet-marketing-tool.co.uk Internet Marketing Tools

    What a load of crap. Using Facebook etc is fine and you can RSS in your blog… best of both worlds.

    TIP: Get into RSS

    TIP 2: Not got a blog? Get one and ignore the naysayers

    Best wishes

    Lewis

  • http://www.cmsearchmarketing.com Patti Fousek

    I get asked about blogs more and more by my clients. While I feel that blogging will not go away anytime soon, companies need to have a plan before they jump on the blogging band wagon. Blogs take time and dedication – so if a business wants a blog, they first need to make sure they have something to say… and that they have contributors. The internet if full of useless blogs – more people and businesses need to make sure they have a plan before starting a blog.

  • http://wordsforhirellc.com/blog Karen Swim

    Blogs are not dead, but they are definitely evolving. The blog once an online journal has become a content managment system which can be molded to the owner’s specific use. Yes, it is much more competitive but we must remember we have not even reached a large majority of the public. Early adopters are off and running on Facebook, Twitter, FriendFeed and more but the majority of people are still not even clear on the meaning or use of a blog. In my mind, that means we have an immense opportunity to educate and recruit fresh new eyes that are neither jaded nor burnt out on the online world.

  • Terri Pattio

    I use blogging to generate traffic to my website, because what I have to offer I want to share with others. Without blogging I would not be able to do it. So I don’t think it’s dead. Everybody has a right to their opinion and that’s all it is.  I’m sure that a lot of people would agree with me.

    • http://www.bidai.info Bidai

      I agree with that. Blogging is a very good option to get more inbound links to your website. I use that. Additionally, like any other 2.0 application, is the best, maybe unique, option  to maintain social interests with a minimum of time.

  • http://www.webspawner.com/users/mrlemarquis/html.index iwmpop (mrlemarquis)

    Hello!

    I just had to make a comment, because if Blogging is dead, then I’m a corpse!

    I’d like to know if the chappie who wrote this blethering article has a few fingers in the well-paid, under value service of "Hosting". I have a hosting service for my Web Sites, cheap – usable, but no way as easy nor useful as the FREE services of Blogger from Google – and I pay for it! My Web Site pages are the least visited of all my "pages" on the Web, and I have felt for quite some time that there is a sort of "snob" feeling about Web Sites and Blog Sites. Many feel that if it’s not a Web Site, just a Blog Site, it’s somehow worth less. What nonsense – put around probably by the scrupuless "Hosters"! What is a Blog Site on the Web if not a Web Site…?

     

    I personally have my own Blogs, only two, which deal with local matters and just general matters, and allow me to communicate with the local (French) population. In a small village in Southern France, I have been surprised to see that – even without publicity – they are relatively well visited. People stop me in the Street and tell me how much they enjoy them, how much information they have been able to collect, about their own area, and about the World in general. I try to have something for everybody, and this occasionally annoys the one or the other, but they continue to read.

    You see – one has to be aware and accept the fact that there are many people out there in the real world who have a PC, Internet, all the works, but don’t know how to use them, and they don’t have the time (or inclination) to learn! Are these people, who just enjoy "surfing" to be ignored? They will not subscribe to "newsletters" from sites like WebProNews (for example) because the content is way above their heads in PC terminology. They want amusement, information, photos, videos, all together if possible!

    Sometime ago I offered to create and manage a Blog Web Site for a local Restaurant/Caterer/Party Organisor – free of charge (silly me..!)

    After 4 weeks he asked me if it wouldn’t be a good idea to stop his other Web Site, which cost quite a lot – every month, and only put articles/publicity onto the Site if really pushed, and only days AFTER the event, whilst I had them on his Blog Site within a few minutes! I told him that stopping whatever was his decision. He stopped and I promptly began a debate with his old "Hosters" who accused me of "pinching" customers…! They even went as far as threatening to "denounce" me for not declaring my earnings (I don’t get any!). The debate only stopped when I found many of my own "copyrighted" photos on their Web Sites….! Now I may well have some earnings to declare to the Tax man!

    Blogging is not dead, it is very useful, and it takes a lot of the "mystery" and "hokus-pokus" out of Computer working. Maybe the real "pro’s" regret that.

    Incidentally – I still do a couple of Blogs for others, free of charge, but I have been obliged to refuse quite a few others – no time! What I DO propose, in all of the cases, is to create and install everything that is necessary, and show the people how to do it themselves. Some do – some don’t!

    Old motto: Give a fish to eat or teach the people how to fish……etc.

    DEAD…?

    • http://www.aeonpi.com AEON

      A Declaration of the Independence of Cyberspace
      Governments of the Industrial World, you weary giants of flesh and steel, I come from Cyberspace, the new home of Mind. On behalf of the future, I ask you of the past to leave us alone. You are not welcome among us. You have no sovereignty where we gather.

      We have no elected government, nor are we likely to have one, so I address you with no greater authority than that with which liberty itself always speaks. I declare the global social space we are building to be naturally independent of the tyrannies you seek to impose on us. You have no moral right to rule us nor do you possess any methods of enforcement we have true reason to fear.

      Governments derive their just powers from the consent of the governed. You have neither solicited nor received ours. We did not invite you. You do not know us, nor do you know our world. Cyberspace does not lie within your borders. Do not think that you can build it, as though it were a public construction project. You cannot. It is an act of nature and it grows itself through our collective actions.

      You have not engaged in our great and gathering conversation, nor did you create the wealth of our marketplaces. You do not know our culture, our ethics, or the unwritten codes that already provide our society more order than could be obtained by any of your impositions.

      You claim there are problems among us that you need to solve. You use this claim as an excuse to invade our precincts. Many of these problems don’t exist. Where there are real conflicts, where there are wrongs, we will identify them and address them by our means. We are forming our own Social Contract . This governance will arise according to the conditions of our world, not yours. Our world is different.

      Cyberspace consists of transactions, relationships, and thought itself, arrayed like a standing wave in the web of our communications. Ours is a world that is both everywhere and nowhere, but it is not where bodies live.

      We are creating a world that all may enter without privilege or prejudice accorded by race, economic power, military force, or station of birth.

      We are creating a world where anyone, anywhere may express his or her beliefs, no matter how singular, without fear of being coerced into silence or conformity.

      Your legal concepts of property, expression, identity, movement, and context do not apply to us. They are based on matter, There is no matter here.

      Our identities have no bodies, so, unlike you, we cannot obtain order by physical coercion. We believe that from ethics, enlightened self-interest, and the commonweal, our governance will emerge . Our identities may be distributed across many of your jurisdictions. The only law that all our constituent cultures would generally recognize is the Golden Rule. We hope we will be able to build our particular solutions on that basis. But we cannot accept the solutions you are attempting to impose.

      In the United States, you have today created a law, the Telecommunications Reform Act, which repudiates your own Constitution and insults the dreams of Jefferson, Washington, Mill, Madison, DeToqueville, and Brandeis. These dreams must now be born anew in us.

      You are terrified of your own children, since they are natives in a world where you will always be immigrants. Because you fear them, you entrust your bureaucracies with the parental responsibilities you are too cowardly to confront yourselves. In our world, all the sentiments and expressions of humanity, from the debasing to the angelic, are parts of a seamless whole, the global conversation of bits. We cannot separate the air that chokes from the air upon which wings beat.

      In China, Germany, France, Russia, Singapore, Italy and the United States, you are trying to ward off the virus of liberty by erecting guard posts at the frontiers of Cyberspace. These may keep out the contagion for a small time, but they will not work in a world that will soon be blanketed in bit-bearing media.

      Your increasingly obsolete information industries would perpetuate themselves by proposing laws, in America and elsewhere, that claim to own speech itself throughout the world. These laws would declare ideas to be another industrial product, no more noble than pig iron. In our world, whatever the human mind may create can be reproduced and distributed infinitely at no cost. The global conveyance of thought no longer requires your factories to accomplish.

      These increasingly hostile and colonial measures place us in the same position as those previous lovers of freedom and self-determination who had to reject the authorities of distant, uninformed powers. We must declare our virtual selves immune to your sovereignty, even as we continue to consent to your rule over our bodies. We will spread ourselves across the Planet so that no one can arrest our thoughts.

      We will create a civilization of the Mind in Cyberspace. May it be more humane and fair than the world your governments have made before.

  • http://www.fromtheabbey.com Jeffrey S Arrowood, MTS

    The problem with the Internet and other electronic technology is that nothing as a chance to actually grow and develop.  We’re always looking for the next, more exciting venue.  Blogging is just coming into its own, with established and trustworthy bloggers, a niche for everybody, and a good source of alternative news.  Now it’s passe? 

    Compared to Twitter, Facebook and other mini-blog formats, blogs offer thoughtful and thought-provoking commentary.  That will never go out of style.  Let’s take a breather, let blogs develop, and see what happens rather than always looking for the next fad. 

  • http://intospain.com/ Richie

    I don’t even think he believes it to be quite honest, looks like he was just out to get some self promotion and guess what? It seems to have worked but for all the wrong reasons.

    Everyone knows that blogging is still alive and kicking, if anything – it has become even more wide spread, everyone has a blog, from the guy that reads the news on TV to your old man that has just retired – his new diary.

    I must come up with a stupid statement like this to get my company known a bit more :D

  • http://muaythai-training.synthasite.com kit

    i use blog because it is free hosting for me and for my bussiness and easy to write my content . i am not professional and i write because i love it .

  • http://www.hotmail.com kit789

    i use blog because it is free hosting for me and for my bussiness and easy to write my content . i am not professional and i write because i love it .

    http://muaythai-training.synthasite.com

    it is my blog .

  • http://everlastingwealth8976.blogspot.com Chan Kong Loon

    I believe blogging is very beneficial to business building.But you have to generate useful content so that people will keep coming back to review your content.Blogging is the in-thing nowadays.

  • http://www,marvelousstudio.com Marvelous Studio

    I think you may have spoken before thinking. Why does everything have to be "fashionable" or labeled? My facts are that I have 2 blogs and won’t quit them. I have gotten immediate results from postings and as a marketing tool, blogs help. The other options you mentioned are high maintenace and way too clicky for my likes and goals. I never was in a club in school and don’t care to be in one now. Clubs and your social networks create freaks and extremists. You will see the outcome of that in years to come. No one thought of that? I know it’s all about money.

    Think!

  • http://www.bransonlead.com Jeff

    I am running 3 blogs and my traffic hasn’t declined.  Blogging still has its defined role in cyberspace.  You just have to find a niche.  Here are one of my blogs.

    http://www.bransonlead.com

  • http://www.thingamababy.com/ AJ

    It’s an amusing opinion coming from Wired because it launched a daddy blog this year: blog.wired.com/geekdad/

    In my realm, parent blogs, there are plenty of unauthentic voices… paid placements and blogs written by non-parents, or even written in other countries (say, India) in English for an American audience.

    The folks who read me do so precisely because they know I’m a real parent, hopefully an entertaining read, and I’ll lampoon products as often (well, more often) than I praise them. Despite the article’s claim, it is personal as I’ve acquired a dedicated readership that shares their lives with me.

    There are a lot of junk blogs out there, but in no way, shape or form do Twitter, Flickr, Facebook or other social media replace them. Want to know what’s the most powerful medium? Web forums. They’re so dispersed and usually private or inaccessible without logging in that they are easily ignored. But in terms of inbound traffic, web forums are second only to Google in terms of where the people are. Pundits are instead focused on what single commercial site has the most users, not what class of website.

    And look at sites such as Reddit and DIGG. What do they link to most often? Blogs, even blog summaries, in lieu of a direct link to the original news source.

    What’s the point of criticizing a thriving medium? To call attention to yourself? Congrats. I hope bloggers remember to add a REL=”NOFOLLOW” tag when they link to the Wired article. Don’t support cheap antics.

  • Guest

    I don’t think so, there are so many wonderful blogs out there, and the thought of just closing shop and calling it a day while getting traffic seems a bit rash.

    My blog, www.SpeakOutSouthbridge.com is a local political site, and not only does it get a good amount of traffic, but it gets this town of 17,000 engaged in communicating with each other.

    So, interesting article, but maybe because I don’t get Facebook (mid-forties, out of touch I guess), I’d rather be blogging!
     

  • http://www.shaanhaider.com Shaan

    It is really a stupid idea to stop blogging for a stupid reason. Blogs are there and they will be, always

  • http://www.ThreeMoneyMethods.com Three Money Methods

    Does anyone thing that Wired might have posted this as a linkbaiting technique?  Attack all bloggers and see if we can get them to link to us?

    Just a thought.

    Jonathan

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