Now class, let's talk about bloggers - Part 2

So, two things to answer - why we blog, and how do you define a blogger.

The easier one first - why do we blog? Shefaly's post earlier this week offers an answer:

"Some blog for professional reasons; some blog to create a discussion and a community; some are working to create a living archive of their lives; some blog because they need the discipline of writing regularly; some blog because others are blogging."
But those reasons only partly fulfill why I started blogging, and continue to, and how I do. To explain those reasons.....flashback!

**********Backintimemode eshtart keejiye*************************************

I originally decided to dabble in blogging while setting up a blog for a friend over four years ago. After that petered out, I began this blog over two years ago. It stayed static with one three-line post till the period that you can see regular blogging beginning (from the archives). Why?

Because I had nothing to say.

I began the blog because I felt that I needed to learn to write again (see here why I'd stopped). There was also this conceit that the book that had been bubbling inside might eventually reveal itself, once I did some, you know, actual writing. And a blog seemed like a good intermediate way to go about things (of course, that idea got canned (and you know why)).

But, after months of that one post, nothing happened. And I realised I'd really started the blog because I thought I should, and because - as Shefaly says - everybody else had.

When I did eventually start properly blogging, it was because -
* I felt like it
* I had something to say (however undefined and random it may seem)
* I found it was fun.

And that's why I still do it. Of course, the sense of community is another major reason, otherwise I would have never been part of this maaaad pun-a-thon (which was, like, the bestest!).

*****************Backintime mode khatam**************************************

So, more reasons. To which, as Shyam notes, some people just do it for the glory. To which KM adds - le moolah. To which Shefaly appends, 'archiving' or building a 'repository of material' which may be used elsewhere. Not to mention there have to be people out there just doing it so they can get a date (and no, not Falsie - have you not read his posts? After that introduction, kaun dimaag ki maari bechaare ko chipkegi? (Don't worry Falsie, we still love you)).

But that's not all, surely. Some people do it because they need to vent, or to receive some form of validation. Some people blog because they have the time to spare to do it, and because they can. And some people just want to get a book deal out of it and make some money.

And that, perhaps, is that.

And so, to come to the crux of the matter, is there something called a Blogger, or is that just another myth invented so that we can feel a little better about ourselves?

Ummm...in part 3 ok?


Falstaff said...

The difference between having a blog and being a blogger is the difference between having children and being a parent.

- Day Falstaff

The difference between being a blogger and being a parent is that only one of them gets to have sex.

- Night Falstaff

??! said...

one of them gets to have sex
"Got to" - some parents are too scarred from the consequence to even think about the act again.

Shefaly said...


There is one other possible reason. Instead of chasing a moving goalpost, I froze the timeline on my PhD research to end of 2005. I still had a surfeit of research and more was emerging. So I started building a repository of Obesity research. I have not, alas, fed that blog for the last few months but a few hundred visits a day still are seen.

So 'archiving' or 'building a repository' is also a possible reason. One I did not mention in that post :-)

km said...

As an evil capitali$t who smokes fat cigars and kicks the unsuspecting poor on their shins, I am disappointed with you for not including profit as a motive for blogging.

PROFIT, dear ??!, profit!

??! said...

Fair enough. Edited to add.

brinda said...

You mean there's money to be made out of blogging? Do tell!
(Yes, yes, I've been living under a stone these past few years)

??! said...

Book deals, my dear. Or being asked to write columns and articles for papers. Or being quoted in the media, and having people dying to advertise on your blog.


Shefaly said...


He is trapping you into writing a blog. ;-)

Most bloggers do not get book deals or get asked to write. In his 1st year of blogging, Guy Kawasaki made about $3200 and come to think of it, he was a genuine 'celebrity' before Scoble etc came along.

Puppy Manohar said...

Dear ??!,

You have also not considered our reason, which is that too much brilliance was being stored in too many different locations (orkut, gmail chat archives etc.). It was decided to put all of this material on a blog for the ease of finding all past brilliance(s) in one place.

The first couple of posts on the blog were just copy/pastes from orkut and a lot of the posts are just slightly modified IM sessions.

Thanks and regards,

Puppy Manohar

"There's nothing that a hundred men or more could ever do" - Toto

Falstaff said...

You know, it seems to me that if you have a clearly defined reason for blogging (like archiving or making money - km you evil capitalist you! - or getting a book deal then you are not a Blogger. I shall now make like Mysterious Wise Man from East and talk about nishkaam blogging and blogging being its own reward (not to mention the sense of being subsumed in a larger Consciousness). True bloggers are people who blog not because they want to get something out of it but because they feel they have to.

Shyam said...

Apart from the fame thing, the main reason I have a blog is because there is a deep-seated compulsion in me to keep the world informed of my opinions on things... it's a duty, man. A calling, I tellya!

Veena said...

What about killing time? Like when one is vetti at work with nothing to do, blogging just seems to happen.

Lekhni said...

Why go through all this blogistential angst?

In my own case, I blog.


P.S. That means, I really haven't figured out why, and would rather not let on about that.

dipali said...

The entire conpendium on bloggers and blogging is terrific! looking forward to the next chapter:)

brinda said...

shefaly: thanks! i think he should add "persistent" to the list of names we can call him... :-)
??!: hah! con artist! and anyway, seems too much like work

Anki said...

oh god u r the only one on my blogroll
who still blogs

Anonymous said...

does any of this matter? seriously.


DewdropDream said...

I want a tee that says 'iBlog'. Just saying.

And Brinda should definitely blog. What can she be tempted with? :D

@ Anki: Umm... try adding more people to your blogroll?

shyam said...

Part 3 kab hai. Kab hai Part 3? KAB?


??! said...

Dear Puppy:
This would be what Shefaly calls 'archiving', no?

Correct. "Because I had nothing else to do" is a valid option. Will add.

Well, thank you. One tries.

Who knows? Does Life?

??! said...

You can run, but you can never...oh, dem. You can. Bugger.

Not angst, navel-gazing. Much more relaxing, and interesting. If you like lint, that is.

See here. Also, "iBlog" is too Apple, no?