Personally, I am not at all a fan of blogging and the increasing social trend that it is fostering.  While I do acknowledge that there might be some benefits to to such a tool, I think overall it causes significant problems intellectually and socially.  It seems that the modern form of blogging is a far cry from what started as a small scale form of personal diaries in the late 1990’s.  Even when blogging was in its infant phase, I still did not understand the appeal of it; I acknowledge that some people find writing a diary to be therapeutic/historical/etc. , but why do so many people feel the need to post their personal lives on the internet for the rest of the world to see?

Since its origins, blogging has obviously evolved well beyond personal diaries and by now has worked its way into every aspect, niche, and topic that could possibly be discussed.  And it is out of this viral nature of blogs that I feel comes both the positives and negatives of such a tool.  Naturally, it is an incredibly simple and efficient way to spread information, but it is an equally efficient way to spread garbage.  I’m sure the amount of blog posts that are not worth reading exponentially outnumbers the one’s that are. People love putting their opinions out there for the rest of the world to read, but are often ignorant, misinformed, or simply aimlessly writing just for the sake of it.  In a day and age where things such as blogs are so public and readily accessible, people should be even more careful about what they share, not the other way around.

Moving on, while it is not quite the same, I basically put social media forums like Twitter on the same level as blogs because I think that the birth of such companies is based on the popularity of blogging.  The problem with this style of non-academic writing is that it forms habits of poor writing.  Blogs, Twitter accounts, Facebook, etc. are all riddled with spelling and grammar errors, erroneous messages, and poor structure.  Even as I’m writing this very post, I find myself guilty of some of those.  If this were a paper instead of a post, I would be much more careful with my style, tone, and organization.  Aside from fostering horrible writing skills, I think there is also a social aspect that is worth addressing.  As technology has become increasingly a part of our society, I feel that people are becoming less social in person.  People’s phones and computers become their best friends, rather than actual people.  It is easy to have an anonymous discussion with someone online (whether you are praising what they have to say or bitching and moaning at them), but it is much harder to do so in person, which I hold to be one of the most important skills someone can have.

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7 responses »

  1. Connie says:

    While I, for one, see far more benefits to blogging than negative consequences, I can definitely see where you are coming from. One of the downfalls, which I’m not sure if I addressed in my blog entry, is the possibility of entries that are essentially useless. From an educational standpoint, if professors made it mandatory for students to blog in order to receive a grade, there is a very good chance that some of the weaker, lazy students will post any old content, thought-provoking or not, just to get the grade. This, like you mentioned, causes this accumulation of useless information that is neither useful nor beneficial for the students. Consequently, the students and the professor will then have to sift through all of the garbage in an attempt to find value in the posts.

    • Jordi says:

      Isn’t the free rider, or laziness problem, somewhat self-correcting? If you post older, boring stuff, won’t we know that and either grade you down, or simply mock you? I’m not sure which is more effective.

  2. Cheryl says:

    I am personally not the biggest fan of blogging, and I was pretty late in the social network trend aka facebook, twitter, etc….One thing I know is that a lot of people or organizations have used blogs and social networks as ways to spread bad information reagarding serious aspects such as political parties or government. This is one of the reasons why facebook and several old blogging networks such as yahoo 360 were banned in some Asian countries ( China, Vietnam…). The governments there deem them detrimental, since they might potentially spread harmful ideas and opinions about the government among the citizens. That’s why, even though I can see more positive aspects of blogging, I do think you have a good point here.

  3. You make a good point that blogs are just as easily used to spread garbage as opposed to actually useful information and news. Enforcing poor writing habits is also a negative consequence of blogging. However, in my experience with blogs – as opposed to twitter or facebook – is that the more grammatically correct you are and the more professional your writing is, the more seriously your work is taken. Of course, not all blogs are useful. But in my experience, a well moderated blog can be a great tool to society, and the negative consequences you mentioned can be limited with good moderation.

  4. Jordi says:

    LOL. Yes, you are guilty.

  5. Jordi says:

    Are these anonymous conversations here?

  6. Jordi says:

    Sometime I would like you to see what actual research has learned about the use of social technologies and actual sociability. What you have here is folk sociology- it is what everyone”thinks” based on anecdotes. It may be right. But it also may make errors. I have seen some of this research. It is not necessarily uniform: there are inconsistencies. But some shows that people are MORE social the more they use technology. They complement their relationships; they don’t replace them.

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