If Everyone is Doing it, Is it Really Cool Anymore?

If a tree falls on a mime in the middle of the woods and nobody hears the mime scream (mouth wide open with no audible sound), does anyone care? I speak of blogging about blogging and I speak to myself as well.

In my opinion, the market is way oversaturated when it comes to blogging news. There’s Blog Herald, and the Blogging Times and 901am. Not to mention The Blog Columnist. There’s writing good copy for blogs, making money from blogs, and more. I even write about making WordPress do crazy things.

Trust me when I say I love all these authors and I read them. Martin Neumann at Blog Columnist is great. I love Minic (who just went from The Blogging Times to 901am this morning). I podcasted with David Krug this morning. I love these guys and I love the topic. But when is too much too much?

The same barrier to entry that exists in blogging exists in blogging about blogging. It takes someone with no experience less than 5 minutes to create a blog and as long as they want to create content. There is no barrier to entry. It’s the gripe that the mainstream media has about bloggers. The cost is low, the operational overhead is low. In other words, the barrier to entry is low. The same can be said about blogging about blogging.

It does not take a rocket scientist to blog about blogging. It’s so easy. Blog networks give bloggers ammo every day. Personality cults develop around personas in the blogosphere. There’s no trick to being an Arrington Fanboy or to love Calacanis – yet, as easy as these things are, it’s easier still to hate Calacanis and Mike Arrington.

And blogging these things become easier because in doing so, the polarization around these topics and people means instant attention in the blogosphere.

When it comes to blogging about blogging, enough is enough. It’s time to move the conversation into a more creative stream. It’s time to think independantly and add value to the conversation. It’s time to filter the noise and find a strong signal.

There’s bloggers out there doing this – and most avoid blogging about blogging. They are leaders in their fields. I love Seth Godin, for instance. Clear thinking business mind that doesn’t mind sharing his opinion. But that’s the key, it’s his opinion, dynamic as it is. Or, Loren Baker at Search Engine Journal who chronicles the search engine world but does so independently and intelligently. As much of a big shot as Mark Cuban is, you can’t deny that he stands head and shoulders above the rest of the internet-famous as a clear thinking business professional. Eh?

Nothing against the bloggers who blog about blogging. I just think there’s too much noise and not enough signal.

18 Replies to “If Everyone is Doing it, Is it Really Cool Anymore?”

  1. A blog post about bloggers blogging about blogging, the irony ;O)

    As a culprit I have to say it’s good to write about what you are interested in. Any topic under the sun is fair game, even (yuk) sports :OD

  2. Blogging news is mainly crap.

    I personally don’t have time to read what the same people in the same circle jerk do every day.

    I mean some of these people actually think that “Performancing Partners” being sold again is news. LOL

  3. Minic is with 901 now? I missed that in my Bloglines..

    But you’re right .. I probably do still glance at them, but I stopped reading articles that start with … “Darren over at Problogger says…”

  4. Who cares if it’s cool or not? I blog about blogs because I like to record my thoughts and share them with others. I’m sure not everyone subscribes to the same blogs (or maybe they do but that just means there isn’t enough saturation). More blogs bring more voices; we don’t all drink the same green Kool-Aid!


  5. There are probably more “blogs on blogging” than there are actual companies doing cool things with blogs, and it’s because it has always been easier to criticize what other people are trying to create rather than having the cojones to start something of value on your own.

  6. I dont agree with you Mike. It’s so easy to start something of value on your own, even as a company. The biggest problem companies do have in terms of using new technology (like blogs and RSS) is that many companies are either to big to get a simple thing like blogs rollin’ or/and they dont see the benefit of using this technology. I’m working in the IT of a worldwide operating company special chemicals company and the main reason we’re not using new technology is because the executives have no idea blogs and RSS exist. instead, we’re using outdated and not-really-maintained mailing lists.
    Another reason for companies not using blogs on the internet (not talking about intranet here) is that it is so much work to maintain. not every co-worker is qualified to post stuff on the net. Moderation is not a proper solution too.
    I’d say there are probably more “blogs on blogging” than there are actual companies doing cool things with blogs, and it’s because the easiest way to make your voice heared is to make a fool out of yourself.

    (the text above does concentrate on “common” companies – not internet-based companies that create their revenue from the reader/user of their website)

  7. Aaron Chris, I was talking about starting a company that’s focused on using blog technology in new and interesting ways (Technorati, Newsvine, Daylife, Buzz Metrics, etc.) and then growing it successfully. It’s always been harder to create something of value rather than simply speculate about other’s creations. Something about “those who can, do, those who can’t, blog about other people doing it” :)

  8. What you got to understand (especially you Mikee) is that bloggers blog for different reasons – we all come with different skill sets.

    Lets take me: I’m a professional journalist by trade who has decided to use his craft in the blogging industry (apart from other activities I do).

    I enjoy writing/reporting about the blogging industry (as well as other sectors) and as long as there is an audience for it, each to their own. The audience decides whether my blog about blogs and bloggers (or any blogs really) live or die – as well as the others in the circle jerk. :-)

    Over-saturation – yes! But that’s in every industry. The good will survive and the rest will fade away. Nothing new there.

    The “circle jerk” comment comes from the lazy bloggers who simply report and never include their opinion – that I agree is boring.

    Mikee – expect an opinion piece on some of your comments here over at my blog some time soon. ;-)

  9. I guess my argument, Martin, is not whether there is an audience. Quite obviously that’s the case or there wouldn’t be so many blogs. My argument is that I think there’s a tipping point and if we haven’t reached it yet, we’re quickly approaching. Most “blogging about blogging” blogs are quite good. But when the market gets saturated, quality and reader interest will surely fall. The law of diminishing returns.

  10. I am actually everywhere, contributing content where possible.

    What saturates a market is when same group of people say the same thing in the same manner and in the same opinion. But as long as I see differences in news delivery, it is totally fine with me. I still visit all of them (except for The Blogging Times) :)

  11. Good points, Aaron. I see it as when a market gets saturated the cream will rise to the top and the rest will fade away – sometimes very quickly. So I guess now is the time for those who blog about blogging to try and rise above the pack.

    But lets take a look at “blogging about blogs” – are you talking about the “how to” type of blog or the “newsy” blog.

    For the “how to” type of blog YES, it’s very over-saturated.

    But for a pure blogging news blog, I still think there are spots left up for grabs for those willing to do it right and stick to it.

  12. Saturation point always comes before the people involved realize it. Blogging about blogging has been saturated for up to a year, I think.

    If I go to my feed reader, glance at the headlines and get a sinking feeling, that’s good enough for me. I’m outta there.

    I yearn for something fresh in the field but fail to find it on a daily basis.

    So, if you can’t find what you’re looking for, do it yourself. :-)

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