Since I have started blogging, I have read many web sites on how to be a better blogger. One of the main steps given on just about every website for blog help is something along the following lines:
“Find a niche that you are passionate about”
I am passionate about a great many things and also have a day job so as a result, I can not really effectively run multiple blogs to handle all the stuff I’m passionate about. I have a small passion for politics, but it is not big enough to have its own blog. I have absolutely love music (both listening to and creating) and probably have enough content to start my own blog on that. I love watching movies, reading books (both novels and comics), I am heavily into technology and even co-host a radio show on that topic.
And I am not the only one. There are people out there who’s interests vary more than mine. We have opinions on a lot of things and our friends can not always be there for that occasional rant, constant discussion, or simple correction on facts. So people like me, blog and we use our blog to discuss these many interests. However, how relevant and interesting can personal blogs be? Do these blogs still hold relevance in their various topic fields. Do people care about the thoughts and opinions of others?
I would certainly hope so. The free exchange of ideas, opinions, and rants is one of the things that makes the internet so great. I am able to read the opinions of others, comment on those opinions, or even write my own rebuttal. The exchange of ideas is how problems get identified, discussed and eventually (as well as hopefully) solved. I believe that the personal blog as just as much importance in the blogsphere as those niche blogs. While niche blogs can help you understand something and maybe even teach you something, personal blogs can do that and more.
I think that we are beginning to see less and less personal blogs on their own domains (not on LiveJournal or Blogger) and I think a lot of that is because all of the “how to make money through blogging” websites discourage the idea of multiple topics. Sure, multiple topics does make it a little harder to target advertisers for a personal blog, but through decent understanding of Adsense and other contextual advertising engines you can get great contextual ads for your individual articles without too much work. Those “pro blogging” websites use the idea of a niche blog so that you can focus the advertising side of things. Not a bad idea, but it really discourages the concept of a personal blog.
Granted, the proof is not in the pudding on this website. I have honestly not made that much money through this website, granted I have not come out with nothing it just has not been hundreds of thousands of dollars. However, income on this website has always been secondary to having a place to talk about ideas, rant, or even discuss world events.
I would be interested in knowing how Darren Rowse (of ProBlogger.net) feels about this issue, maybe I should email him and ask. How do you, the reader, feel about personal blogs? Do you feel that they are relevant in to today’s internet or merely an exercise in ego?