Blogs — What Are They Good For?

If you read any sizable number of blogs, you soon realize that one of the most popular topics are endless self-referential posts about blogging itself (see, even I’m doing it!) And amongst the endless “666 Tips to Increase Traffic to Your Blog” bullshit posts, you see a lot of “It’s Not Really a Blog If…” posts.

Lorelle VanFossen, for example, informs us that a blog can’t simply be an online notebook where you post things that you find interesting. Oh noes, that would never do.

Your blog is not a resource for you. Sure, you may think that, and treat it accordingly, but a blog is not a place you can store your notes to come back to and remember how to add a Gravatar to your blog. There are bookmarking services for that.

A blog is a device through which you can create a dialog, share information, ask questions, get answers, give answers, and show the world what you know, and what you don’t know.

The right thing to say is: My blog is a resource for my readers.

First, all a blog is simply a reverse chronological series of posts — nothing more or less than an updated, web-ified version of the old Unix .plan files that used to serve much the same function.

Second, you could do a lot worse than to simply ignore the latest SEO tips and silly guidelines that have resulted in a plethora of boring, pointless blogs that nobody reads. Blaze your own trail. Use your blog to note and keep track of ideas, cool sites, helpful information, whatever.

Just throw out the cookie cutter for goodness sake.

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