I started to have the same feelings - that the blog had passed its prime. I recently began using Twitter as a communication and professional development tool, and soon I will use it to get kids to participate in discussions on the one to one program in our district. I have a Google+ account which I use for creating communication groups for my various committees. I contribute to wikis, save web sites to Delicious, post videos on YouTube, and use Google Hangouts and Skype for video chats. And of course, I have a Facebook account for my personal use (sorry, but there's no way I am bringing my work life and my semi-dormant Rock Band obsession together into the same location). With all of this going on, why would I ever return to blogging?
The answer is simple: a blog is the only place to lay out a fully-formed thought in one space that is easy to find, easy to search, and easy to manage. It is easy to spit out fragments of ideas or to retweet someone else's post. If Snooki can do it, so can I, right? It takes time to write a blog, and it takes time to read a blog just like it also takes time to comprehend an idea and it takes time to form your own opinion. Tweeting takes a minute to write and a minute to read - and it takes one minute before you move on to the next thing.
Besides, blogging is not dead. It has evolved and gotten better. Are you posting photos with captions on Tumblr? That's blogging. Are you publishing a web site on WordPress? That's blogging. Twitter is even technically a form of blogging in the short form - it reaches more people but contains less content.
Blogging is a lot like Facebook if you think of it. They both give you the ability to post several sentences coupled with photos, videos, and URL links. The difference is what surrounds your writing. On most blogs, your posts are surrounded by links back to your other posts. Your blog does one thing - highlights your writing. In Facebook your posts are surrounded by photos from your grandma's birthday, offers for better cellular service, and your friend's latest high score on Bejeweled Blitz. Yes, I know you are good at Words With Friends, but do you really need to post your score every day? Some of these things are good, others are a distraction, and some simply don't make sense. Here are the posts my friends sent out today:
- A video of Darth Vader wearing a kilt, playing the bagpipes and riding a unicycle
- The score from the Celtics game
- A photo of my friend with his arm around a guy dressed like a Subway sandwich
- Green Day announcing their latest tour dates
- Harvard's latest video called, "On the cutting edge of history - Innovation at Harvard"
There is something simple about using a blog. I think its simplicity makes it powerful. Write. Write every day. Write something meaningful. Write something worthwhile. If people like it, they will keep coming back for the words you write and not for any other reason. Keep using Twitter, Facebook or any other social media form to send out your blog articles to your friends and colleagues. But don't give up on blogs. They're not dead yet.