From the article:
"The number of blogs and the use of blog readers rose rapidly last year--but a majority of Americans still do not know what a blog is.
A report by the Pew Internet and American Life Project, called the "State of Blogging," discovered that readership of Web blogs--essentially, Web-based diaries--spiked 58 percent last year, with 27 percent of Internet users, or 32 million people, saying that they read blogs. Twelve percent of people who read blogs also chose to post comments on them.
Blog creation is also growing. By the end of 2004, seven percent of U.S. adults, or more than 8 million people, had written a blog, according to the study.
...Blog creators tend to be young men who have broadband and are Internet veterans. Fifty-seven percent of bloggers are male.
Hmm... who does that sound like?
Interestingly, I had never heard of a 'blog' until early this year! I set up a preliminary blog at the beginning of my school year with a free service called 'Xanga', but have since set up my own blog on my own webspace (I like having the control) using an open-source blogging app called 'Thingamablog'.
The most amazing aspect of this 'blog revolution' is the fact that almost every Google search I now perform brings up as many blog entries in the results as 'old-fashined websites'; and a lot of times that's a good thing. Blogs are 'new' and 'current', while many older pages are 'static' and 'outdated'. There is still a place for the traditional, static website (check out all of mine in the links column here) — but the blog is here to stay. For some, it's their livelihood, for others, it's a fun diversion. But for all, it can help to disseminate important information at a more rapid rate than traditional media (as was evidenced by 'Rathergate' and many other 'blogosphere exposés').
This entry includes a bonus! To those of you who hope to set up a well-read and awesome blog, here are some tips:
- Keep entries somewhat short (i.e. no books on pages!).
- Use proper grammar (this is NOT a chat room!).
- Find a service (or set up your own blog, like me) that is indexed by Google and other web search sites, and try to get people to link to your blog - this way people will find you blog when doing web searches. Xanga did not do this.
- Link to sources of information, and try to include other's information, pictures or links from time to time (it adds some variety).
- Try to use a service (or set up your own blog) with RSS or Atom news feeds.
- Read other's blogs to find out what looks nice, and what doesn't. The design of a blog is very important!
- Keep a sense of humor. Blogs aren't news sites—they ought to be somewhat personal.