Saturday, January 21, 2006

5 Blogospheres in One Blogiverse

I'm formulating a list of topics and areas in which a good blogologist or blog consultant should be an expert.

We must be experienced in several blog software tools (Blogger, WordPress, TypePad, Xanga, MySpace, Moveable Type, Radio, etc.) to know which might be best for a client.

We must have experience interacting with all types of blogs, personal, CEO, mommy, military, political, hobby, tech, etc.

We must post comments at all types of blogs, get into or start heated debates at not only blogs, but also at discussion lists, web forums, chat rooms, bulletin boards, and message parlors.

We must experiment with wikis, glogs (assistive psycho-geographic tech), podcasts, audioblogging, videoblogging, blog polling, mashups and social media networking communities. We must also be proficient email writers, email surveyers, and email marketers.

My contemplation on blogology led me to how blog-analytics and diagnostics are applied to various blog situations. I formulated different sets of expectations and directives for different types of blogs, then eventually realized: the types resolve themselves in distinct sub-cultures and web tribalisms, each with its own blog-thropology and blogistics.

There seemed to be two, three, no four, or more "blogospherias". I wanted to call them "blogospherias" to differentiate them from blogosphere, but that seemed to over-specify and needlessly complicate an emerging discovery.

They are more than sectors of one blogosphere, I decided. Each individual blogosphere is governed by a different set of rules, etiquette, and protocols. This seemed both obvious and yet also a ripe area for exploration.

A leap in conjecture: the Fragmented Disunified Multi-Blogosphere, a new model to work with in blogological theory, practice, and analysis.

I kept pondering the ambiguities and peculiarities of various styles of blogging.

The totality of blogs does not behave or exist as one unified, homogenous blogosphere at all, although in the early 1990s such an entity probably did exist. Then it was a tiny blogosphere of tech people, not teenage diarists, but link logs and computerese. No photos of babies and cats, but recommended sites for computer related items, events, info. These primitive early blogs were rather unified and homogenous.

It was the rise of Pop Blogging, especially Blogger, LiveJournal, Xanga, then eventually MySpace, that spawned a strange mix of hybrid bloggeries: from legit personal and professional blogs...to internal firewalled intranet-like corporate networking or project collab blogs...to pseudo, reblogger, link farm, and copy & paste faux blogs.

A MySpace blog of a high school student is set up to admit friends into their private online community, which is generally composed of only offline friends, people they know in real life, and family. Readers have to ask to be invited to join the blogger's community, or friends list, in order to post comments. Bloggers often read or write their blogs and IM simultaneously.

This is a very different blogosphere from the one that Naked Conversations, Blog, or Who Let the Blogs Out speak of, for the most part.

So, as I pondered the difference between a business PR blog and a teen network blog, I was startled at how profound a chasm existed between them, and how more chasms and more blog realms loomed ahead of my analytic vision.

Here is my first attempt at a systematic theoretical framework for understanding the complexities of the multi-blogosphere, the blogiverse (blog + universe) that we are residing within.


5 Blogospheres
in One Blogiverse


(1.) Social Connection Youth IM-Blogosphere: Xanga, LiveJournal, MySpace, etc.

(2.) Mature Personal-Hobby-Family Blogosphere

(3.) Business-Marketing-PR-CEO-Corporate Blogosphere

(4.) Meta Blogosphere (Blog Consultants, Blogologists, Blog Metric Analysts, Blog Trackers, Blog Content Syndicaters/Aggregators, Blog Services, Blogging Tool Providers, Blog Hosts, Blog Directories, etc.)

(5.) Professional/Military/Educational Blogosphere


If I my theorizing has some merit, and there are a multiplicity of blogospheres within a blogiverse of all possible blogs, then each blogosphere has to be differentiated by distinct rules, user expectations, netiquette, protocol, tech configurations, meaning a different philosophy and style govern each of them.

So it would not be fair to compare the behavior and goals of high school Xanga blogs to those of meta-blogs, CEO blogs, mommy blogs, or Army blogs.


[signed] steven streight aka vaspers the grate

1 comment:

carrie said...

makes sense.

there may even be more subcategories in each of those.

interesting way to look at it.