this time I'll do some "metablogging" - blog about blogging. More specifically: what I consider to be suitable topics/material for blogging and what not.
Me and Elina had an argument about this and it got me thinking. Some key points below.
What audience people write to?
Elina argued that people (should) write only for themselves. I opposed to that: if people write only to themselves then they can just as well keep a private diary and to keep things really private - later on burn it as well. But then why keep it at all? But I don't want to go into those (private diary) reasons. So I'll leave this topic for some other time.
My point is that if you are posting the writing on the Internet then you are hoping that there will be an audience for that (even if you do not admit it). So it brings back the question: what is that audience?
And the tricky issue with a public blog is that it is public - even if you manage to define the target audience for yourself, you never know who might actually end up reading it. So you better have a thick skin or you should be careful with your comments.
I plan to have a thick skin. :-)
What are you trying to achieve with your blog? What is the point of it all?
Elina says that I'm a practical person (as opposed to her, I suppose :-P) and when I think of it, I tend to agree. So I need a point, even when blogging. :-) But then again, should there always be a point? For me, enjoyable blogs seem to fall in two categories: specialized and general. Specialized blogs write about some some specific topic (like my other blog devilop) and general blogs tend to be... um... more general; and to discuss a little bit about everything :-)
This blog is intended to be more general with the main purpose being: disseminate information (more on that below).
But these questions can be asked about any written work, blogging is not unique at all. If you know your audience and you know what you are trying to achieve then the choice of topics should be pretty clear. And also (hopefully) more interesting for your audience to read.
The main reason why I started this are my friends abroad. Some of them have blogs (Märt, Kaido & Katu). And it is fun to read what is happening there. So I figured that most probably it would be fun for them to read what is happening back "home", in case they are interested. Answering the audience question above: I consider the main audience to be my friends abroad. And this is also the main reason why I will write in English, most of the time. So my non-Estonian friends would also understand! ;-)
One of the best things about blogs is the non-obtrusiveness: you can choose to read them and you can choose to ignore them. You can choose to use RSS to configure your ThunderBird to download them automagically or you can choose to add a "live" bookmark to your FireFox. No need to mess around with some mailing lists or similar stuff for distributing information...
Although spreading the information was the final push in setting up my blog, I will also write about other stuff - ideas about anything. And I have made a promise to myself that I will not care "too much" about the opinions that other people might develop as a result. :-)
Ok, this has turned out to be quite a long post so I'll stop here.