Friday, May 6, 2011

What Is A Blog?

Many of our clients grapple with terms that didn't exist twenty years ago. One question in particular that we've been asked a lot is 'What Is A Blog?'

While 'Dog Years' are measured as 7 dog years to 1 human year, technology can be measured similarly. Given the current pace due to fierce competition by the Silicon Valley companies, education trends, and our ability and desire to quickly build a better product, 'Tech Years' would probably equate to something like 10 years to every human year. Along with these leaps in scientific know-how come new words and phrases.

The term 'Blog' is short for 'Web Log'. It sounds like a word that took hold because people just plain talk too fast, but it actually stems from a hyphenated form of the phrase referenced in an online article back in the late 1990s.

Most blogs are opinion-based, although the growing development is to use blogs as advertizing or marketing tools. Some blogs can be extremely informative. Some can be tremendously offensive. Bloggers have been praised, ridiculed and even sued because of the content of their blog posts. There are political blogs, blogs about the environment, food, sports, kids, marriage, divorce, and pretty much every other subject matter you could imagine. Google any topic ('Google' is another new technology term that has become a mainstream verb), and you will most likely find a blog related to your search.

Popular forums for short blogs include Facebook and Twitter, although these sites are considered social networking tools rather than blogs in the strictest sense of the term.

So who can post a blog? Well, anyone can as long as they have established a place on the web to do so. Some blogs allow for comments from the readers. If blogging about a controversial subject, these comments and follow up can become quite heated. There is a Bloggers Code of Conduct that should be adhered to when posting a blog. The general rule of thumb is to not write anything in a blog that you wouldn't say to someone's face. That just seems courteous and proper common sense, but a surprising number of blogs have resulted in sometimes frightening outcomes. Bloggers have been fired, threatened, stalked, sued and attacked for the content or context of their blogs.

Please contact Mobile PC Solutions for more information about blogging or other confusing techno-terms, and check back here occasionally where we will try to inform without getting too technical. You can subscribe to our blog by clicking on a link to the left.

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