An attempt to define blogging as a genre


Having previously asked “Can you define blogging without mentioning technology?” here is my attempt to do just that for a book chapter on blogging and journalism. Am I right? Did I miss something? I would like your comments on this short excerpt:

Blogging, above all, is conversational. It’s social. He is networked. The blog has two key features: links and comments. Don’t include either, and you’re talking to yourself.

Blogs are also incomplete, open and continuous. It’s about process, not product. This is a shared space.

Only the act of reposting print articles or broadcasting journalism on a blog, for example, does not use the medium in a meaningful way – a process derisively called “shovelware”. Instead, a more useful approach is to blog about a story idea, then blog a draft version, asking readers for feedback – and answer it – at both stages. The published or broadcast version may also be posted to the blog later, as the final stage of its production, but again with an invitation for updates and corrections. You can also post the “uncut” version.

In short, the story is never over.

And blogging is personal and informal – often difficult for journalists who have been trained for years to be objective and distanced from their stories. This personal quality has several advantages: it allows you to establish a closer connection with readers, which, in turn, often helps you better understand the issues that interest them. This allows you to be more transparent about the information production process, building trust and information culture. And it allows you space for reflection, if you choose to use it.


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