The question that seems to be coming up over and over again is, "Yeah, so what?" Like Twitter and Facebook, blogs are just part of the stream of consciousness of humanity. I like to think my inner monologue is interesting and relevant, but most of what people get written down and posted online is somewhere between a therapy session and an acid trip -- relevant to the blogger, not so much to the reader.
I write something every day -- and you'll notice how rarely something ends up on my professional blog. Much of what I write is simply inspecting my own navel -- most people don't care about the amount of lint in my belly, but sometimes I get a brilliant idea when examining that little bit of fluff that seems to have no relevance to the universe.
As I mentioned in Emails, discussions, blogs, wiki and web content, blogs are what we believe "right now" -- they aren't the answers, and they aren't really the discussion. It's kind of like test-driving a car -- your ideas need a little road test before you completely commit to them.
The question I'm struggling with now is balance. Writing, reading other people's ideas, responding to those ideas, participating in a universe bigger than myself is... really distracting. How much we really learn from open introspection and how much we're just blathering is something that, unfortunately, I think remains to be seen.
There can be something almost cult-ish about the blogging world -- you build a core group of people who enthusiastically agree with you and you with them. You have literally billions of people to sift through to find that core group, which means, if there's someone out there for everyone, you're going to find someone and, hopefully more than one or two.
Which makes me wonder... do we really broaden our horizons by reading and participating in social media outlets like blogging, twitter and Facebook, or is it just so much inspecting our navels with an audience?
I'm just test-driving this idea, so don't be surprised if you see me driving around in an entirely different idea later...