I blame Twitter
The Irish Blog Awards are held every year around March.
Along with the Blog Awards, we have the annual angst as to whether blogging is dead in Ireland.
I am beginning to think it probably is.
Recently I did a bit of tidying and unsubscribed to a load of sites. I did so, because a load of them were effectively dead. I am now down to a mere 161 subscriptions.
In the past, I used to fire up my old laptop to see what was going on in the world, and I would be inundated with new posts. It used to take quite a while to read ‘em all. That flood is down to a mere trickle now, and most of the trickle is from overseas. There is still a handful of Irish sites that is updated daily but it is a mighty small handful.
When I started writing nearly four years ago, there seemed to be a new Irish site appearing every day. I noticed too that the vast majority of the people who visited here were Irish. It used to work out that for every two Irish visitors, there was one American and the rest of the world was way down the scale. That has changed dramatically. Now for every Irish visitor, I get at least one from the UK and at least two from America. In other words, my Irish readership has dropped into a comfortable second place and occasionally into third. In fact, nearly half my readership is from the States now, which is somewhat surprising considering the way I used to slate them.
I have often idly pondered on the reasons for this change. It’s not that I have gained a massive following from overseas, but more a case of losing a lot of Irish readers with the slack being taken up elsewhere. I’m not complaining. Everyone is welcome, though I’m still not quite sure why so many people want to read my regular musings.
Maybe it’s because Ireland is going through so many crises for the last couple of years that the Irish have just become numb with apathy? One can only handle so much in the way of scandals, financial disasters and incompetence before just becoming immune to it all and saying ‘what’s the fucking point in arguing’?
Or maybe it’s that fucking Twitter thing?
I blame Twitter.
Ironically I came to this post via your twitter feed 🙂
I’ve only updated my own blog 8 times this year and my most recent post is about calling it a day.
Every now and then I think about updating it but then I couldn’t be arsed. As for the blog awards I think it would be impossible to beat the 2009 awards. One of my best nights out that I can barely remember!
Yeap, it’s definitely Twitter. (I arrived here from Twitter too 🙂 )
agus mise Twitter
Heh! Twitter has its uses.
Actually, it says a lot that I have more followers on Twitter than I do on the feed reader?
“Everyone is welcome, though I’m still not quite sure why so many people want to read my regular musings” …
Well, I can only speak for myself .. but I do enjoy exactly that .. your random “musings” ..
The blog doesn’t have a “one-line” theme running though it, as so many now do ..
Its the often highly amusing “rambles” which make it so attractive .. one is able to sympathise or to say “thank god that wasn’t me” ..
In short, it provides a nice change, with laughs thrown in …
I’ve never used either “Twatter” or “Fart-face Book” and never will ..
Keep up the good work Grandad .. give us all something to smile about now & again .. 🙂 🙂 🙂
Well, the odd new Irish site does appear. 😉
Personally, I find your ramblings quite engaging and plan to keep reading them.
“The blog doesn’t have a “one-line” theme running though it, as so many now do .. ”
How very true. No one could accuse you of that eh, GD ?
Funnily enough, I wrote something very similar to this today but didn’t post it. Lack of spark/fireworks/argument/debate on blogs due to everyone talking all day on Twitter.
And because people who are masochists really only follow people they enjoy there’s no ying to the yang, if you get me. Bar one or two very small exceptions I don’t follow cuntsa and rarely interact with the cunts. And the folk you do follow you’re a lot more friendly with than when they were other bloggers or just commentators.
It’s all gone a bit quiet for sure. It needs something to spark it back into life.
Twitter is the devil! The beautiful devil. The beautiful devil with red hooves and shiny horns.
I really wasn’t looking for reasons why people read this [I put it down to latent insanity], but thanks for that anyway Marcus and Haddock.
TT – Actually I am surprised that you haven’t noticed that there is, in fact a hidden theme to all my posts. Each one is designed to annoy you and to get you to contradict. I have a pretty high success rate so far. 😉
Twenty – Time to liven things up? Any suggestions? 😈
Liv – Sounds to me like you have a serious addiction there? Are you a Twitter junkie? Heh!
There does seem to be a general trend of people moving onto Twitter. I’m not keen on it personally. I think we live in a ridiculously complicated world and that there are many ideas which simply cannot be explained within a 140-character limit. Twitter is fine if you want a quick debate about a subject, but for anything more than that, I don’t think that blogging can be beaten.
I’m working on preparing my own blog at the moment, as it happens. At first, I flatly refused to join Twitter. I just couldn’t see what use it would have for me. I got into a discussion with a few bloggers and many of them tell me they use it as a way of directing traffic onto their blogs more than anything else. I’ll probably be using it for much the same purpose, but not much more. I can’t see myself being arsed to spend all day replying constantly to tweets.
As for Irish blogging, the Irish could probably do with their own version of the Guido Fawkes blog to liven things up. Currently, he’s got a story on his blog which comes dangerously close to accusing our Foreign Secretary of being gay. What have you got? Several bloggers saying that the Taoiseach is a cunt. We knew that…
Reaper – I find Twitter good for announcing my little golden nuggets of wisdom, but apart from that it is anly good for the quick quip [in my humble opinion]. The main problem with Twitter is that you can’t hold a decent dialogue, as you have to check so far back to remind yourself what was said.
Best of luck with your own site [and a great pity you chose that shagging Blogger!!]. You’s do better if it weren’t password protected!! 😉
Whats Twitter anyway?
I don’t think anyone knows how many blogs are out there. I wouldn’t rely on the IBA as an indicator; most bloggers I know have never heard of them. I once emailed the organisers to ask why there was no religious category – religion playing a considerably larger part in Irish life than most of the other categories; they didn’t bother to reply. If a small self-selecting group has angst, I wouldn’t worry!
I still can’t properly say blogging is dead, but I sure as hell can say that it’s dying.
Of all the people I’ve subscribed to in GReader, I swear that only about half of them still update anymore…
Either Irish blogging is dead, books are dead, print is dead, e-mail is dead, and the web is dead; or saying things are dead is dead.
Twitter has probably diverted a lot of the I-must-communicate feelings people have about things, but for what it’s worth, I arrived here through RSS.
Grandad said “Best of luck with your own site [and a great pity you chose that shagging Blogger!!]. You’s do better if it weren’t password protected!”
Blogger seems alright for what I need, but I might decide to move it at some stage if persuaded by an alternative. The reason it’s set to private is because it’s currently undergoing some work on the design. Trust me, you don’t wanna see what it looks like at the moment. Messy isn’t the word…
I like your “ramblings” and I also read that Major person most days.
I work overseas so like to read blogs about Ireland as I feel it kinda keeps me in touch. As well as posting on a couple of Irish based web/chat sites.
No idea what either Twitter or Facebook are about at all at all. I like to keep my privacy private.
Thanks for the daily smile (mostly) Grandad.
It’s funny that I have been arguing the same thing and have actually quit posting bits on FB and Twitter except for the occasional blurb, mainly because I realized that I wasn’t bothering to put forth the effort to write posts or take pictures anymore.
When I started blogging many years ago, I could churn out content every day and never ran out of things to blather about, but lately, it’s all short updates, a sentence or two if I’m lucky. I do think the whole instant social media sites with their click a button to say you like something is really killing written communication as a whole.
I read blogs of people who vary their content, I don’t want to read about a single topic every day, I do follow a few cooking/knitting sites and honestly, I’ll go through those once a week most of the time. It’s sites like yours that I really look for to add to an rss or twitter link, because I never know what I’m going to get, and that’s the fun of reading them.
Blogging ain’t dead. It’s merely unemployed at the moment. It could be though, that Ireland, being situated on a (rather large) island, simply ran out of Irish type folks who were interested in starting a blog? Could that be a possibility? Seems to me that after 5+ years of my own blogging that out of all those who start blogs, less than 1/3rd of them continue on while the other 2/3rds or so lose interest after the first year.
Not to worry. We’re raising a whole crop of new bloggers even as we speak and that’s despite Farcebook and Twit-ter.
Neelly – You don’t want to know!
Ian – I only mentioned the IBA as that seems to be the compulsory time for writing on this subject. I thought I would bend the rules a little.
TheChrisD – I had to go out for an hour today. When I came back, there were two new items on my reader. Not very prolific for the middle of a Wednesday afternoon?
Mossy – Major? Who’s he? 😉
Reaper – I was only kidding abiout the password. I do have a bit of a thing about Blogger though. I much prefer sites on WordPress [easier to comment on, for a start].
StepfordMum – What I like about “blogging” is the ability to say something more than a curt sentence. There is the ability to explore a subject and to have a decent debate or discussion. Can’t do that on Twitter. As for changing subjects – I like to do that to keep people guessing.
Kirk M – There are a few new startups, but whether they are enough to make up for the losses? Anyway, who cares?
It annoys the hell out of me that there’ll be a wee Union Jack beside my name when I press submit comment. But there you go. I may be Irish, but I’m in England.
I have to agree with Blackwatertown about the flags. I work for an Austrian company in Tunisia but I’m Irish.
So, the company server is in Vienna, I’m in Tunis but I live in Wicklow ! Go figure !
Grandad said to me “Reaper – I was only kidding abiout the password. I do have a bit of a thing about Blogger though. I much prefer sites on WordPress [easier to comment on, for a start].”
Agreed. It’s why I’m opting out of the standard Blogger comments system. I don’t especially like it and there’s no way of blocking spam, other than the word verification thing. I’m going to use Intense Debate instead – seems far, far more useful.
Jayzus but you’re a fussy lot! Flags removed. *sigh*
Reaper – Glad to hear about the comments. I’m looking forward to seeing the finished product. I think.
“nearly half my readership is from the States now, which is somewhat surprising considering the way I used to slate them.”
When I saw this it reminded me of a quote from a fellow Irishman of ours….
“Americans adore me and will go on adoring me until I say something nice about them” – George Bernard Shaw
It would be polite of you to at least remember that not everyone has the luxury of sitting home on their ass all day. Work, as well as the young ones growing up and figuring out the knots, head up the queue.
(Just in case the boss and herself are reading….)
Hey! Where’s my flag??
Caligula – Good old GBS. A man after my own heart.
Kirk M – For fuck’s sake!!! Do yiz want flags or not?
I call for a vote. All in favor say,”Aye”!
[CUE: Crickets chirping]
Then the “Ayes” have it. Bring on the flags! (Gentlemen, hoist the colors!)
Aw, fuckit! Flags reinstated. As if I give a shit anyway.
Doc – Stop complaining or I won’t renew your annual fee for the Twilight Home, and you’ll be back out on the streets again.
I knew I should’ve used all caps.