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What Brings Users to Blogs? 143

Posted by ScuttleMonkey
from the skewed-sample-populations dept.
Billosaur writes "The Center for Citizen Media Blog has an interesting overview of the Collaborative News Survey 'Hype versus Reality', detailing the results of a study done by Hsing Wei from Harvard University's Kennedy School of Government on why users are attracted to collaborative news, commenting and blogging sites. Among the conclusions of the study are that people who use these sites are 'mostly young and male, especially those who visit technology-related sites, looking for 'a fix of unique, informative fun,' and 'filling in the blanks' left by traditional news sources. Or is it just because it beats working?"
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What Brings Users to Blogs?

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  • by Bryansix (761547) on Tuesday July 18, 2006 @03:27PM (#15739352) Homepage
    sure beats working! Plus I think a lot of people are attracted to sites that allow commenting because they like to argue.
  • by darcling (987237) on Tuesday July 18, 2006 @03:29PM (#15739368) Homepage
    On a "big news site" they give you the information. Period.

    If they're wrong (in your opinion) or leave out important facts - too bad, they don't care about you. In a blog/comment arena you can interface directly with the author and flesh out the details, inaccuracies, or corroborate their work.

    Community = Good.
  • Slashdot (Score:3, Insightful)

    by PaulMorel (962396) on Tuesday July 18, 2006 @03:33PM (#15739406)
    Slashdot brings users to blogs.

    After all, who needs reliable news outlets when you can get all your news pre-filtered by people just like you?

  • Interesting Study (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Moqui (940533) on Tuesday July 18, 2006 @03:33PM (#15739410)
    I would have guessed that more bloggers were female than male. That has been my experience, as a good number of my female friends have blogs, post on other blogs, or generally surf blogs, outnumbering my male friends.

    However, it could be that they are classifying blogs differently, ie. tech journals as blogs, or personal blogs, when they do their study.
  • by Opportunist (166417) on Tuesday July 18, 2006 @04:04PM (#15739601)
    It forces you to come up with something insightful, witty or at least remotely funny to some arbitrary subject, not something you can pick. That's too easy.

    And it serves exactly the same purpose: The need to SAY something and have people read it, write lengthy diatribes about something nobody really cares about but still, people will read it.

    And unlike conventional blogs, I know people read that junk I write. They mod me down.
  • by FreakyAntelope (827365) on Tuesday July 18, 2006 @04:05PM (#15739606)
    I think you have the right idea about that, but you're looking at it the wrong way. I don't read slashdot, or any other blogs, so that I can post to inflate my own ego, and I don't think the majority of Slashdoters do either. Rather, I go to slashdot because it (usually) has interesting content and, more importantly, *other people* comment on it. I don't usually comment on things I don't know much about, and it's wonderful to be able to read an article and then compare it to other people's knowlage and opinions. It's often hard to tell how biased an article might be, or what it's significance is in a broder context, but having (usually) intellegent discussion and comments on it makes the articles much more useful and stimulating.

                - Toby
  • Simple (Score:4, Insightful)

    by geekoid (135745) <(dadinportland) (at) (yahoo.com)> on Tuesday July 18, 2006 @04:07PM (#15739614) Homepage Journal
    Blogs are an easy place to find people who agree with you.
  • Re:beats working (Score:2, Insightful)

    by kfg (145172) * on Tuesday July 18, 2006 @04:27PM (#15739721)
    i love taking a 90 hour paycheck for 10-15 hours of work.

    That's why they pay you at 1/10 rate.

    KFG
  • by happy_place (632005) on Tuesday July 18, 2006 @04:29PM (#15739729) Homepage
    I remember when folks got online to share information about challenging technological problems... they exchanged code... and shared configuration tips... wanted to hear what other folks were doing... back in the daze of Usenet, you could find all sorts of folks from experts to beginners, and there was no deep psychological basis for those who stuck around to help... we were just glad to have them online... a bunch of nerds... Nowadays, we'd probably call these guys sickos needed to substitute their lack of self-esteem... blah blah blah... Could it be that some folks still do that? --Ray
  • why visit a blog? (Score:2, Insightful)

    by rucs_hack (784150) on Tuesday July 18, 2006 @04:30PM (#15739736)
    1: because it covers a topic that interests me.

    2: Because it's run/written by someone I know personally or respect.

    Those reasons are, although (2) is evolved a bit, the exact same reasons why I would read a newspaper, a book, or a leaflet.

    The medium has changed, and analysts feel they need to redefine the same old impulses using new terminology. People don't change that fast. They barely change at all. All that changes is the world they live in.

    People like a constant supply of new 'content'. Not everyone requires that it be high quality, the key is 'interesting'.

    When I was a teenager this was supplied by hunting through second hand bookshops for old sci-fi books. Now teenagers search the web for interesting stuff to view. It's *exactly* the same thing, with less dust.

  • Who Responds? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by mrxak (727974) on Tuesday July 18, 2006 @04:46PM (#15739827)
    The only people who respond to my blog want to sell me drugs or porn.
  • My theories (Score:3, Insightful)

    by gettingbraver (987276) on Tuesday July 18, 2006 @05:04PM (#15739932)
    1) Some who blog are very good writers and enjoy writing.

    2) Some think they are good writers (and aren't) and enjoy writing.

    3) Some like to read and can differentiate between 1 and 2.

    4) Some who like to read can't differentiate between 1 and 2.

    5) Some enjoy the interraction.

    6) Some like to get obnoxious and argue with everyone. See 2.

    7) Some can learn something.

    8) Some think they know everything. See 6.

  • Re:beats working (Score:2, Insightful)

    by noidentity (188756) on Tuesday July 18, 2006 @05:21PM (#15740034)
    Wow, it must be nice to waste your day away and get paid for it. You must feel a sense of accomplishment after a hard day's non-work. And no, I don't have a job, but I sure as hell wouldn't enjoy spending my days at home surfing the web or reading sites like Slashdot (I spend about 30 minutes a day here). I never understand why people brag about being paid to waste time at work. Now, it'd make more sense to me if they were bragging about having nothing official to do at work and spending that time working on open-source software or some other personal project (what I spend my time doing).

"Love is a snowmobile racing across the tundra and then suddenly it flips over, pinning you underneath. At night, the ice weasels come." --Matt Groening

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