Saturday, May 07, 2005
Blogology: More Theory or More Examples?
QUESTION to My Readers:
Do you feel a need to have more blog related theory...
...or more examples of businesses and individuals using a blog to accomplish specific objectives?
Do you want more theory...or more examples?
I have no idea what you need until you tell me, via comments or emails.
But I have my own opinion about this.
Theory is Far More Important Than Examples
If you have the best and smartest blog theory, you'll make your own examples.
If you thoroughly understand what makes a blog different from other communication tools, you'll invent your own implementations.
If you are well-studied in the history of blogs, you'll write your own chapter, or at least a footnote, in the blog historical records.
If you examine and analyze the most successful and popular bloggers, you'll earn your own spot in the bloggers' hall of fame.
If you learn how online writing differs from print media writing, you'll forge your own path through the blog jungle.
If you discover how to develop a unique blog "voice"/"writing style", you'll have a blog that rises above the untold millions of other blogs.
If you understand why a blog needs to be interactive, sincere, honest, and candid, you'll devise your own way to communicate with your target audience.
If you genuinely wish to share information, provide practical how-to tips, link to valuable and credible online resources, and build an online community based on improving some aspect of the web or life in general, you'll succeed as a blogger.
DANGERS of EXAMPLES
Examples of how others have used blogs for specific purposes can be inspiring.
Examples can provide vital implementation tips and application concepts.
Examples can provoke you to try something new, knowing ahead of time about the pitfalls and opportunities involved.
But examples can also limit you.
Examples can make you think, "Well, that worked for his company, because he's a digital camera manufacturer. My business is a barber shop, so we have nothing in common. A blog won't work for my business."
Examples can provoke unthinking imitation.
Examples can steer you the wrong way, if you find out 6 months later that the blog eventually did more harm than good and has been terminated and deleted from the blogsphere. It does happen. Often.
Examples can set up inappropriate patterns in which you place your trust.
Examples can be based on faulty strategy, inaccurate theoretical assumptions, and poor marketing.
Can you effectively spot these dysfunctional aspects in an anecdote about someone who is using a blog?
You need to lay the foundation of Blogology Basics before you start a blog, and before you are unduly influenced by anecdotal evidence from other bloggers.
Also, my mind gets drowsy when reading long descriptions of the details of blog implementation. I find the anecdotes invariably dull and predicatable in most cases.
I prefer to take my machete and chop my own path through the blogo-jungle.
Now...what do you think?
I'd be quite interested in hearing your opinion about Theory vs. Examples.
Do you feel you need more Theory...
...or more Examples?
What theory do you already know?
What examples do you already admire?
Soon, I'll post an article about the New Super Bloggers who influence me the most.
But now...what is YOUR opinion?
Am I too extreme in placing Theory over Example?
Post a comment or email me your opinion.
[signed] Steven Streight aka Vaspers the Grate aka Leopold the Told
Posted by steven edward streight at 5/07/2005 09:38:00 AM