My Low-Tech Blog Universe

A few days ago when I was typing out one of my blog entries, I thought to myself: wouldn’t it be fun to make a living blogging ? I didn’t think give it a whole lot more thought. I figured that like every other idea about the internet, someone is already doing it, and it wasn’t like I hadn’t heard of people blogging for a living. But then, today, I started googling, and it occurs to me that clearly I’m living in a Luddite world.

My first blog started around late 2004. At the time, I’m sure, there were already 20 million more successful blogs in existence. So, clearly, I was never at the helm of things. But now I find that there is whole culture of blogging for $$$ out there, and apparently not just celebrities and pundits, people who already claim a cult of followers, but people like you and me who started a blog, attracted a circle of loyal readers, threw in some ads, and started making money.

There is Problogger, a site that talks about how to make money blogging. They have a job board for bloggers. Incredible ! There is a lifetime of reading material on how to get out of the blogging doldrums or things like etiquette and ideas for blogging. Talk about a crazy self-perpetuating world, blogs on how to blog. Talk about entrepreneurial ingenuity ! “As long as someone will read it and thus generate some ad-$$$, I can blog about anything.”

So any chance that I could a blog into an income source ? I don’t know. I fear that maybe I am not thoroughly enough immersed into the internet culture for people to buy my blogging wisdom. Or would that only be necessary if the topic of my blog were something very technological. It seems that as long as you provide well founded or should I say worthwhile advice or know-how, it doesn’t matter what your command of the latest technology or web fad or fashion is. If you’re an expert an ancient Egyptian art or south east Asian tulips, someone might be interested in that.

You have to carve out a niche, an area of (perceived) expertise that will draw in a regular and loyal, curious readership. There you provide a daily dose of news people are interested in but don’t have the time or energy to search for themselves. A sort of news mining operation where you cover any number of sources on the web, selecting only the best of the best, and package and deliver it to the news-hungry.

There is a column in the paper that I like to read that’s basically a short overview of what the columnists of NY Times and Washington Post etc. are writing about that morning. It gives you a broad overview of what the current debate’s about and spare you the ballast. Maintaining a column like that might be quite feasible. Where the money would come from still remains a question.

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