Facebook & Twitter Replacing Blogging?

That’s what someone over at Forbes has to say. I can’t speak for others, but that will never happen for me, because Facebook is exactly what octogenarian Betty White stated – a really big waste of time.

Twitter? Well, if you can say it in 140 characters, it probably should be said in person, because most tweets are more like commands. “ Here, read this.” ” Look, this is on sale here.” No one will be writing anything really informative, though it may come eventually with TallTweets.

But really good journalism? No, I don’t think so. Facebook is the equivalent of the town gossip, and Twitter is down and dirty yelling at someone, if you are not feeling verbose.

It’s hard to recall these days, now that most bloggers are corporate drones (*cough*), but blogging was originally the pursuit of hobbyists. And now a lot of those hobbyists appear to be giving it up, or at least cutting back, in favor of less demanding hobbies that offer some of the same satisfactions: microblogging and social networking.

That would be the town gossip types and those not fully conversant in the English language – the latter becoming far too prevalent these days.

According to Technorati’s annual “State of the Blogosphere” survey, 53 percent of hobbyist bloggers say they update their blogs either somewhat less or a lot less than they have in the past. Only 21 percent say they do it more. Meanwhile, 54 percent of corporate bloggers say they’re posting either somewhat or a lot more often.

It’s like the old saw about how everyone has one good book in them, many have been getting it out a couple of paragraphs at a time, and perhaps it’s a short book. Corporate bloggers might be wanting to see some actual money come in, after being frustrated with the eccentricities of ad dollars and the people visiting pages.

Those who say they’re blogging less often were then asked to say why. While the most popular answer was “work/family commitments,” the next two most common choices were “I am devoting more time to microblogging (eg. Twitter)” and “I am devoting more time to social networks.”

In other words, Facebook and Twitter have found a sizable niche: people who have something to say, but either are content to say it only to their friends, or don’t need more than 140 characters to express it.

This is because if you use either of these venues for getting your thoughts out, no one will criticize if you don’t have fully formed ideas, possibly have a problem with proper grammar or spelling, or simply don’t have the mental discipline to follow the steps to doing it right.

Facebook writing tends to be the Beavis & Butthead variety of inside story telling, if you’re not completely in on the initial idea you could easily be lost. Also, many people are not sure what they are going to say when they say it. This sort of off the cuff, staccato writing style appeals to many, but will not accomplish much transfer of pertinent information. Those doing it are easily amused though.


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