Friday, September 12, 2008

Towards a taxonomy of blogs - what kind of blog is yours?

In a commentary (Towards a taxonomy of blogs ) for the Creative Economy, Margaret Simons writes:

Sometimes language can obscure as much as it reveals, particularly when the world changes faster than our ability to create new vocabulary.
I think we have reached this situation with “blogging.” Never the most beautiful sound, the word “blog” is now manifestly inadequate to allow us to talk in sensible ways about the many different things that are happening in internet based publication by individuals and groups.
We need new words.

I am going to make an attempt to invent some new words for different kinds of blog, in the hope that readers will dive in, add and improve.

Margaret then goes on to list:
Pamphleteering Blogs
The Digest Blog
The Advocacy Blog
The Popular Mechanics Blog
The Exhibition Blog
The Gatewatcher Blog
The Diary
The Advertisement
The News Blog

I wouldn’t pretend for a second that the above taxonomy of blogs is exhaustive or final. But I hope I have demonstrated that when commentators sneer at blogs and ridicule any suggestion that they could be a useful and important adjunct, or even replacement, for aspects of the mainstream media, they would do well to define their terms.
Blogs do some things very well indeed. Some of the things they do are old functions in new clothes, and some of the things they do are new.
I suspect that in a decade, the word “blog” will no longer be widely used. Instead we will have a whole lot of new words to reflect the diversity of individual publishing on the World Wide Web.

So, where does your professional blog / your personal blog / your personal blog about your professional life fall?


Paul Reynolds said...

Interesting idea. And worth pursuing.
So where do you think, "the professional blog" fits in this taxonomy.
Thats how I would describe mine?

Warren Cheetham said...

Good question Paul. I think a blog like yours (which I've followed for a while) covers a few of Simon's categories- diary, pamphleteer, digest...
I think a mix of themes in a blog helps to shape the unique 'voice' of the blog and keeps both the writer and audience interested.
- Warren