Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Response to "The State of the Live Web"

As a newcomer to the blogosphere, I still can not help but be amazed by the amount of blogs on the internet. I come across blogs and realize what they are now, where in the past I did not understand. Like anyone who is unfamiliar with something, fear of the unknown discouraged me from not only attempting to create a blog, but even reading them. I did not understand what the point of a blog was, who was writing them, and above all if the information was valid. I doubted this huge phenomenon. After becoming an active blogger, I have realized that every man or woman and his or her dog, has a blog.

After reading The State of the Live Web, April 2007 on Sifry’s Alerts, which discusses Technorati’s State of the Blogosphere Reports, I thought I would discuss two details in it that have opened my eyes even wider to the blogging world. The first piece of information in this report that peaked my interest was that by April 2007, 22 of the top 100 sites were blogs. The amount of top 100 blogs almost doubling from Q3 in 2006, which at the time only categorized 12 blogs in the top 100, suggests that this spike in blogs as a reputable source for information is on the increase. Although I would not use a blog as a main source for information, I would use it to gather others opinions and ideas relating to a subject. Bloggers post first, then check facts; where the mainstream media checks facts, then publishes. This alone makes me a little weary to rely on a blog for important information. However, there is no doubt that this idea is quickly losing strength.

The second piece of information I found interesting was the rise in the use of tags being used in blogs. A tag is a keyword or term assigned to a piece of information, such as a blog post, which can describe an item, making it able to be found by browsers or searchers. A tag is most often chosen by the item’s creator. The growth of tags is slowly beginning to rise, and Sifry’s Alerts notes that over 230 million posts are using tags. Tags are not only found on blogs, but have begun to be utilized on websites as well. Tags make it convenient for users to link to other blogs or websites with similar content by clicking on the tag. It is like one-stop shopping, but for bloggers and users. I have noticed an increase in the use of tags, even before I knew what they were. They appear at the bottom of website articles, waiting to be clicked on. Now familiar with them, you will notice how ubiquitous they are.

It is no question that this medium, blogging, is now considered mainstream.


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