Here’s the condensed version of my Manila Bulletin Blog-O-Rama column today on “10 Things About Blogging in 2006:”
1. Blogging is here to stay but the excitement will be leveling off. Blogging will no longer be viewed as a novelty and will create less of a buzz as it did two years ago. It will continue to become a widespread and accepted online activity. Those who can take the pressure of maintaining constant, regular posts will stay while the others will quit or go on to other pursuits.
2. Niche blogs will rule. While political blogs will continue to lend their voice to the Pinoy blogosphere, trends show that themed blogs dealing with food, tourism, entertainment, technology and other dominant concerns will gain leadership, if they are not already. Blogs will be an extension of popular culture as manifested by the high traffic of sites dealing with Korean telenovelas, music lyrics and reality TV shows like Pinoy Big Brother. This could serve as a tip for those who are still thinking of putting up their sites or want to be successful in this endeavor: go where the crowds go.
3. More Pinoys will attempt to go into professional blogging, or at least derive profits from their blogs. In reality, many are called but only a few will succeed. The majority are still trying to make sense out of Google AdSense, as it is.
4. The rise of the community or group blogs. If thinking by your lonesome in front of the computer intimidates you, then why not gather a handful of your friends and blog away. Group blogs are primarily hinged on the idea that two (or more) heads are better than one. Plus, thereâ€™s less pressure to post since the schedules are rotated among the members. Good examples of this venture are Blogkadahan, Echeblahblah and the irreverent The Man Blog.
5. A handful of bloggers will be recruited into mainstream media. The key is having an idea or opinion that matters.
6. More members of the mainstream media will get into blogging. And not only this, we foresee that the mainstream media will themselves add blogs as a component of their websites.
7. Blogging and the mainstream media: a happy coexistence? Rather than debate on whether one will dislodge the other, blogs will continue to provide links to relevant news articles and bloggers will rely on the media as sources of their blog posts. â€œ(Blogging) is not a substitute for the resources and brands that media companies have developed. Investigative journalism will still be the hallmark of the media. Bloggers are viewed more as fact-checkers to keep the media honest. The challenge for mainstream media is to keep up with the bloggersâ€™ speed,â€ cites a paper from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania.
8. Blogging as a marketing tool. It is already noted that more corporations, businesses and private institutions will get into blogging. It seems like a good idea if you want to get your message across dynamically and considering that most people aged 18-30 are now spending more time online. However, it shouldnâ€™t scream â€œhardsell.â€ Put up a blog that smacks of a press release and readers will most likely hit the â€œCloseâ€ button.
9. Politicians who blog? A no-no! Honestly, we prefer to hear our politicians on radio or see them on TV. We wouldnâ€™t love to read something which is most likely penned by his gofer or publicist. Besides, he really wouldnâ€™t have the time to respond to all the love letters and/or hate comments.
10. High-tech blogging: the next wave. Even though podcasting has yet to take off in this country, our telcos are well-advised to mine the potentials of moblogging. Who knows the next time we might find ourselves blogging substantially from our mobile phones, or flash live video images from our camphone to WordPress? The possibilities are endless.