How has the world of blogging changed since I started so many years ago on Airstrip One? Well, I still toil in obscurity. Not that I mind.
The early adopters, primed by the rise of terrorism and war, perhaps minded to discuss law and sciences, have been superseded by a whole ecology of content. Indeed, blogging is embedded in a whole set of channels for advertising self-generated content to your networks: Twitter, Facebook and so on. What you know complements who you know.
Jean Aw of Notcot sets out a hierarchy of content from the lowly hobbyist to the grand content kings of AOL and Yahoo. Between the amateur and the giants lie intermediary websites, semipro businesses that meet the need for curation in content. Some of these intermediaries are dubbed Lifestyle Bloggers:
The rise of the Lifestyle Blog doesn't mean that other blogs will disappear. It's just a growing and increasingly relevant part of the ecosystem. This crude breakdown is to illustrate the differences between Lifestyle Blogs and other blog businesses. It’s not a job. It’s a lifestyle. It’s something that evolves in parallel to living fulfilling, exciting lives. It’s a means to share a perspective on life. Not news. Not covering every topic. It’s a curated view of the world that readers can fall in love with and live through. It’s about passion, aspiration and inspiration.
Within communities, certain individuals will naturally acquire a wider following. They become minor celebrities: fulfilling the role of leaders and mentors. The overarching need is for regular readers or fans of their lifestyle.
Curation is a natural role for the gatekeeper: self-appointed guides to the noise. But can this role turn a dime?