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Thursday, April 27, 2006

Auntie's blooming

Despite most of the buzz across the web, the fact that the BBC is basing its new wave of services around social media doesn't underline the importance of blogging and web 2.0. It heralds their death.

Despite the frenzied, and sometimes excited, coverage in the blogosphere and the BBC's reckless use of web-too-dot-oh lingo like 'findability' and 'active audiences', this isn't the start of a new era. Well, not how you think. After all, 'Auntie' doesn't tend to haul herself out of her knackered old armchair and adjust her tea-stained cardigan without remembering that every new idea means gambling with my, and my countryfolks', hard-earned sterling.

The BBC is by no means an innovator - she's a cranky old crone whose creative peaks in the last few years you can count on one hand and generally involve a time-traveling toff chasing remote-controlled dustbins around Peckham with Billie Piper. (Mind you, the UK version of The Apprentice is currently dominating my Wednesday nights, so props for that at least.)

Don't get me wrong - I'm a massive supporter of public-funded media. I could argue with you forever that the BBC News is the only news outlet worth considering due to its comforting lack of commercial agenda. But I'm also pragmatic, and I admit that it's not perfect. It pays an extraordinary amount of my dosh to Jonathan Ross, for example, so he can buy suits that make him look like a prat.

But when The Beeb decides to adopt a strategy as core to its future, you can be certain that the idea has nicely bedded in and it definitely won't be a risky move. Just like Jonathan Ross, social media has proved its worth to the BBC by moving beyond its youth, spawning a few offspring and getting flabby around the middle.

And anyway, is it just me that has started to feel a little wrong using the term 'blog'? I know my French colleagues agree - one of them, just the other day, told me the French were 'so over blogging'. The BBC's statement just goes to show that it's not about blogs any more - just good old-fashioned social publishing.

Blogging is dead. Welcome to the mainstream.

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Anonymous Stephen said...

"And anyway, is it just me that has started to feel a little wrong using the term 'blog'?"

I hope not! Blog(ger) is in the title and url of my blog. Whoops! I mean my 'social publishing' platform.

7:20 am  
Blogger Easton Ellsworth said...

Me too, Stephen! Uh-oh :).

Nice post Jon. I need to learn more about the possible demise of "blogging" and "Web 2.0" - my hunch is that these terms will evolve over the next few years and that the ideas they denote will change over time, as they have already in the past few years. It's a fascinating topic and I'm glad you've addressed it. More needs to be done to figure out where this crazy boat is headed.

8:19 am  

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