Blogs--the best is yet to come

There is much conversation in the blogger world about the latest Technorati announcement that the blog-tracking service monitors 14 million blogs, or about double the number tracked at the beginning of the year.

Technorati has a built in incentive to promote the growth of blogs, since they are trying to build traffic to their site. What is more revealing is that only about half of the blogs have been updated in the past three months, and only 13% are updated more than once a week. So the "real" number of active blogs is something under 2 million, which is a more realistic figure.

Blogs have already begun to change the news world, and perhaps one of the very best uses of blogs is to disseminate news quickly during a crisis, like the tsunami or the London bombings. Blogs are also changing politics, with opinion writers of all parties using blogs to disseminate ideas that are not typicaly covered in the Mainstream Media (MSM).

But I think we have barely scratched the potential of blogs as an information organizing and work tool. Blogs are slowly finding their way into the business environment, and one frontier I am interested in is the use of blogs in K12 schools as a writing and publishing tool. I'm currently working on just such a project in a rural Louisiana town, where we have the grade school, middle school, high school, and the town government all using blog-style Web sites. It's too early to draw any definitive conclusions, but the town site (Vivian, Louisiana) has been so popular that a local church has begun using the same platform, and the local historical society is also planning to use it.

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