Content-type: text/html ~ Stephen's Web ~ What is the Appeal?

Stephen Downes

Knowledge, Learning, Community

Jul 10, 2009

Originally posted on Half an Hour, July 10, 2009.

Responding to The Blog Herald:

> what is the appeal of diaries, journals, personal blogs, and the like?

What is the appeal?

Well, first of all, when the hard drive on my computer inevitably dies, I'll still have my photos and things somewhere.

Second, the audience isn't actually just one person. Close friends and family look at my photos and some of my writings.

Third, it's a legacy, for the distance future, a sort of virtual "I was here".

Fourth, I like to go back through the photos and writings from time to time and review what I was thinking at the time. Because, you know, sometimes I forget.

Fifth, it's not like it's really private, so why cares?

Sixth, the Blogger interface is a lot easier to use than any word processor, and the search on the web works a lot better than the search on my computer.

Seventh, if I keep this up long enough, people will actually read my stuff, if only when they look me up for a job interview or something, so it's nice to be able to give them some sense of who I am and what I think.

Eighth, it's great practise. It makes me a better writer (or photographer). Posting it online makes it more authentic (because of the possibility someone might see it) and hence, better practise.

Ninth, I can link to stuff posted online in my Facebook account, but I can't link to stuff sitting on my hard drive.

Tenth, other people can sometimes use my stuff. A picture, for example, found in a search, might become part of a local tourism advertising campaign.

Stephen Downes Stephen Downes, Casselman, Canada

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