I recently asked readers for questions for my upcoming interviews with Professional bloggers. Bobby Masteria asked:
‘Ask long time probloggers what have been their fears, hopes and expectations.’
It is certainly a question I will ask in the interviews I do – but I thought I’d also answer it here for myself. I’ll start in this post with some of my ‘expectations’.
The last two years of blogging has been a whirlwind for me. I’ve learnt so much and seen so many changes in the blogosphere. I sometimes find myself staring in a daze at my powerbook’s screen wondering what the next year or two will bring. As I’ve said before – my mind boggles at where we are headed as a community of bloggers and I hardly know where or how to begin in describing my expectations. Let me give a few:
1. Blogging Tools and Services continue to grow. You would not believe how long it used to take me to write and format a blog post. Back when I started (just over two years ago) I used Blogger which for its time was a good system – but as a Mac user it was very time consuming as formatting had to all be done in long hand (ie I had to put in all of the tags for bold, italics, links etc). These days I use a wonderful tool by the name of Ecto (yes I do tend to rave about it) which has cut my blogging time down to a fraction of what it was. I discovered Ecto just before the Olympic games which was very fortunate for the upkeep of our Athens Blog. At the peak of the games I was able to add 15 – 20 posts an hour using Ecto (mainly just quotes from and links to news articles from around the web). It also enabled me to write and save posts for later uploading from anywhere (as long as I had my laptop handy). Not only that I now write my posts in ‘What you see is what you get’ mode which makes formatting and uploading pictures a breeze.
Ecto is just one of many such systems out there which are making blogging more automated and a joy to do. Take a look at Technorati’s new Tags for another exciting development.
I suspect that the next 12 months will present us with tools that we can not even imagine that will take our professional (and hobby) blogging to an even higher level.
2. Professional Blogging will Boom. This is not really a prediction but rather is an observation of what is happening already. Even since starting ProBlogger I’ve noticed an upswing in the usage of the term ‘problogger’, ‘professional blogging’ etc. More and more articles are being written on the topic (both for and against it), groups of pro bloggers are beginning to form and self organize, bloggers are starting blog consultancies, larger companies are starting blogs and it seems that even small hobby bloggers are exploring ways of finding revenue streams for their blogs. The spectrum of bloggers exploring the commercial aspects of blogging was always going to happen but it seems that the momentum is really starting to build.
3. The Rise of the Parasite Blogger – With the developments in blogging and RSS technology many of us who are attempting to make a living from blogging are noticing a disturbing trend in sites that attempt to hijack feeds and blogs content for their own commercial gain. I’m not talking here about taking a quote and giving an appropriate link to an article you may have written – rather I’m talking about sites who simply reproduce whole articles, and even whole blogs on their own domains with no permission and often with little or no acknowledgment of the source of the content. I expect that these parasite sites will increase in number and devious means and that there will be a need soon for some sort of a central body to represent the rights of individual bloggers who want to protect themselves from the exploitation of their work (which has the potential to be quite harmful).
This post was originally posted on Blogathon.