Blog Guide 1: What is a blog?
January 1, 2008
If you are reading this article because you have decided to create your own blog, congratulations! You will be joining millions of people around the world who are currently blogging and sharing their experiences and opinions on various things.
What is a blog?
The word blog comes from the phrase web log and although blogging became popular only recently, this phenomenon is not entirely new. In the past, several internet users have kept personal online diaries where they log their experiences and thoughts — and this is a precursor to what we now know as blogging.
According to cNet, as of 2006 more than 175,000 new blogs worldwide are created everyday, roughly translating to one new blog every half a second. By year-end 2007, blog-ranking site Technorati.com is said to be tracking more than 112 million blogs worldwide.
Before you start blogging, try to familiarize yourself with these blogging terms first.
- Blog – may be used as a noun to refer to the blog site or as a verb to refer to the act of “blogging” — that is, to maintain a blog or post a blog article (“I am going to blog about my recent trip to Africa.”).
- Blogging – the act of maintaining a blog or posting an article in a blog.
- Blogger – a person who runs a blog or posts in a blog. May also refer to Blogger.com, Google’s blog hosting web site.
- Blog feed – an XML-based file produced by the blog software so that the contents of the blog may be “syndicated” for further distribution on the web.
- Blog hopping - to follow the links from one blog to another; basically, to jump or hop from blog to blog.
- Blogosphere - all blogs or the entire blogging community.
- Blogroll – a list of blogs. Bloggers usually place a blogroll in the sidebar of their blogs to show other blogs they like or frequently visit.
- Categories – a method of organizing blog entries by assigning each entry to a predetermined topic. Each category will link to a list of all entries with related content.
- Comment – a reaction or feedback to a blog entry posted by another blogger, usually located at the end of a blog article.
- Permalink - Permanent link. The unique URL of a single post.
- Post – as a noun, refers to the blog entry itself (“This post is about my dog.”).
Types of blogs
The usual type of blog is a textual blog with content that is primarily text, although sometimes this can be accompanied by photos, videos, or other multimedia.
A podcasting blog broadcasts audio and video.
A blog with predominantly video content is called a video blog or vlog.
One that looks like a picture gallery blog with photos as primary content is called a photoblog.
A blog written via mobile devices such as celphones or PDA is called a moblog or mobile blog.
Individuals usually run personal blogs which they use as online diaries to talk about their experiences, hobbies, or interest. Some choose a particular niche which they blog about such as entertainment, fashion, travel, politics, business, etc.
Popular niche blogs today:
- Engadget – gadgets and technology blog
- TechCrunch – blog about news and rumors on Silicon Valley and Web 2.0 products and companies
- PerezHilton – Hollywood gossip and entertainment blog
Official blogs of prominent personalities:
- Blog Maverick – blog of Mark Cuban, American billionaire who owns the Dallas Mavericks
- John Kerry – official blog of former US Presidential candidate Sen. John Kerry
- Sen. Miriam Defensor-Santiago – official blog of Philippine senator Miriam Defensor-Santiago
Businesses and companies have started leveraging blogs as well as a tool to promote their products or enhance their brand:
Ready to start your own blog? Jump to Blog Guide 2: Parts and elements of a blog.