Monday, November 19, 2007

The Challenge of Original Content

You know, blogging is an interesting experience. As I think about what to post, I realize I have two choices: blog what others are blogging about or, writing something original (or as commentary to relevant news happenings).

For a time, I was posting cool things from other bloggers (with appropriate citations). But then, as I read my daily blogs (using Google's Blog Reader), I found that a lot of the posts I was reading were being told over and again by other bloggers. Sometimes its maddening to read the exact same story, or see the same photos, or reveal the same news (e.g., some GOP lawmaker was caught yet again doing something pervy).

Some of the best bloggers I've noticed are the ones who post original content and yet, so many other folks 'copy and paste' their stuff into their own blogs. A few of my favorite bloggers are Pam's House Blend, Joe.My.God, Lifehacker, Towleroad, and The Daily Dish. If you read these blogs, you'll find so many others in this particular blogging genre copying one another's blogs (yes, I know that Lifehacker isn't of the same genre, but they are just as copied as everyone else). And, yes, I've done my share of that too.

To be fair, these bloggers are different than the average blogger. They blog full-time, every day, every week. And, they profit from their blogging (some including Towleroad) do this full time and make full time pay. Go here for a great interview of Andy Towleroad. Some bloggers are even earning 6 and 7 figure incomes. Talk about a great home business, right?

So what is the average blogger to do? I am thinking the average blogger mixes things up: posts comments about news events, links to other blogs the interesting stories (and yet, does this infrequently as they can), posts things they like, and tries to have some fun with it.

I guess this post is more about 'dude, lighten up, it's just a blog,' sort of post. Rather than lamenting the lack of many original postings (like my own), blogging is supposed to be fun AND, its something everyone and anyone can do. It's that last part that I like so much: we don't need to plop down a lot of money to get into the blogging craze (as say you would if you wanted to get into say, yaughting or golf.)

And who knows, maybe you'll get fired from your job and have some extra time of your hands--and then whalahh! You have a blog, you post every day of every week, build a readership, and then advertisers advertise on your blog, and you become filthy rich. You'll become the new J.K. Rowling of the blog world.

To use a line in the New York Daily News' Gossip Column, "Only in America, kids. Only in America."

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