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Blog, Schmog… It's a Website to Most People

Twice in the last week I’ve been asked if older (i.e. 55+) Internet users “blog.”
In both instances, the person asking me the question didn’t mean, “Are grey surfers bloggers?” but instead was wondering if this older crowd reads blogs.
This is a legitimate question. It also reveals a faulty assumption regarding blogs, which is that your average surfer (of any age) can distinguish between a blog and a regular Website.

While I realize that blogs have many unique (and wonderful) characteristics that set them apart from regular Websites, I’d be willing to bet that Joe or Jane Surfer doesn’t make that distinction. Especially when Joe or Jane doesn’t even know or care about blogs.
To them a blog about breeding goldfish is just another Website on the same topic. Joe or Jane doesn’t care about the (blog) infrastructure below the surface. They are there for and because of the content.
So don’t get too worked up about whether or not a particular target market reads blogs. As far as I’m concerned, if they surf, they read blogs… even if they don’t realize they are doing so in the first place.


  1. Marc Poirier
    Marc Poirier May 26, 2006

    I agree with you completely, blogs are just personal websites powered by easy to use publishing solutions.
    The first website I ever visited (a cool site of the day from yahoo! I think) was in fact the exact same rendered result as a blog, and this was probably in 1995. It was somebody’s diary!

  2. Katarina
    Katarina May 28, 2006

    I’m always confused about “blog” as a verb: if I read and post comments to other people’s blogs, am I “blogging”? Or does that term only apply to running one’s own blog?

  3. Hi Katrina,
    I think “blogging” is reserved for those posting to a blog (meaning adding an entry via the blog’s admin interface).
    If you are commenting on a blog, you are a commenter and if you are reading, you are a reader.
    So in this case Bill is the blogger who is blogging and you are the commenter. Others are readers.
    But we’re all participating in a conversation and many choose to do so via comments on other people’s blogs rather than having their own.

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