In a Sean Kirst blog post from November 2009 , the local blogosphere debated the following premise: Resolved: Facebook is killing blogging.
While I lamented the seeming death of many locally-themed blogs, I think the Post Standard web guru Brian Cubbison cut right to the heart of the debate in his comment:
I have a theory that new technologies in media follow a similar cycle, from industrial strength capability that is simplified and put in the hands of early adapters, to so easy that moms and pops use it, to enhancements that grow so complicated mostly professionals use it, to another round of simplifying and enhancing. That’s one reason blogs are less personal now. I’ll have to blog about it … if I didn’t just do that. Heh.
That being said, I’ve been suckered into yet another new social media platform: Tumblr. (Check it out at Syruckus)
The best way to describe it is like the old bulletin board that used to hang over my desk in my college dorm room: photos, cartoons, inspirational quotes, excerpts from articles. Tumblr also allows me to add video and audio files to the mix.
Just e-mail whatever you encounter on the internet to the site–and it pops up, all formatted. Then edit it. Still figuring out how to do HTML links in the text feature (as opposed to the link feature) but otherwise it’s smooth.
Other than cutting down on my blogging, the weirdest thing about Tumblr is the fact that I’ve adopted a media platform used overwhelmingly by teenagers. Looking up “Syracuse” under the tags feature, the vast majority of hits came back from posts talking about the status of their S.U. applications! One came back talking about the person’s experiences at the senior prom from my old high school–a mere 32 years after my own!
I have found a few cool sites to follow–mainly focusing on baseball, the World Cup and several great photo sites. A friend of mine Tweeted recently about an article discussing how some traditional news sources are playing around with Tumblr. That made me feel a lot better, less like the creepy older guy hanging around the playground!