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What is a Blog?

Posted By Darren Rowse 14th of February 2006 Pro Blogging News 0 Comments

So what is a Blog anyway?

It’s a good question to ask at the beginning of a Blogging for Beginners Series as it is a question I am asked every week.

There are a number of ways I could answer this question ranging from the broad to the highly technical.

Here are a few definitions from other much wiser people on the ‘what is a blog?’ question to get us started (and once you’ve seen what they have to say on the topic I’ll share my own thoughts):

‘A weblog is a hierarchy of text, images, media objects and data, arranged chronologically, that can be viewed in an HTML browser.’ Source

‘A frequent, chronological publication of personal thoughts and Web links.’ Source

‘From “Web log.” A blog is basically a journal that is available on the web. The activity of updating a blog is “blogging” and someone who keeps a blog is a “blogger.”‘ Source

‘A weblog is kind of a continual tour, with a human guide who you get to know. There are many guides to choose from, each develops an audience, and there’s also comraderie and politics between the people who run weblogs, they point to each other, in all kinds of structures, graphs, loops, etc.’ Source

‘A blog is basically a journal that is available on the web. The activity of updating a blog is “blogging” and someone who keeps a blog is a “blogger.” Blogs are typically updated daily using software that allows people with little or no technical background to update and maintain the blog. Postings on a blog are almost always arranged in cronological order with the most recent additions featured most prominantly.’ Source

‘A blog is a website in which items are posted on a regular basis and displayed in reverse chronological order. The term blog is a shortened form of weblog or web log. Authoring a blog, maintaining a blog or adding an article to an existing blog is called “blogging”. Individual articles on a blog are called “blog posts,” “posts” or “entries”. A person who posts these entries is called a “blogger”. A blog comprises text, hypertext, images, and links (to other web pages and to video, audio and other files). Blogs use a conversational style of documentation. Often blogs focus on a particular “area of interest”, such as Washington, D.C.’s political goings-on. Some blogs discuss personal experiences.’ Source.

Read more of this post – where I personally answer the question of ‘what is a blog?’

About Darren Rowse

Darren Rowse is the founder and editor of ProBlogger Blog Tips and Digital Photography School. Learn more about him here and connect with him on Twitter, Facebook, Google+ and LinkedIn.

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  • “‘A weblog is kind of a continual tour, with a human guide who you get to know.”

    oh crap. is that what a blog is? I thought it was just a compendium of cheeky remarks.

    i’d better do some revisions, post haste!

  • Great series Darren. I look forward to more.

  • using software that allows people with little or no technical background to update and maintain the blog
    This may be true for your average blogger, but I think it would be fair to let people know that if they plan on doing this at a professional level a certain amount of technical skill will be required. It is not necessarily a prerequisite, but you should be willing to learn as you go. You’re going to need to get your hands dirty at some point….

  • I personally like the first sentence of the Wikipedia definition the best because it seems to be the most inclusive.” title=”What is a Blog?”>Wikipedia definition the best because it seems to be the most inclusive.

  • “What is a blog?”

    It’s a website, ranked in chronological order. And I still think that this definition is too restrictive…

  • I can verify your comments re “spiritual” blogs, Darren. I ran Adsense on a Christian blog of mine. Not only did Google have trouble with the topics (understandable), but much of what they ran was extremely counter to the biblical views of the blog.

    I took the Adsense off, even though it was producing some cash.

  • A blog is an advertising exploit in which someone who knows less than you earns more money writing incorrect articles about your area of expertise from the comfort of his home while you shlep to work for the Man day after day because you are too proud to sell out your niche for unrighteous Mammon.

  • Roger

    That is the funniest comment I’ve ever seen here at Pro blogger! HAHA. Looks like someone needs a career change Michael!

  • I don’t call it blogging… Wrogging and Phogging with links? Mine is more journalistic than journal. I think the dynamic, looping conversational ability makes it more than a “website”

    New Media Musings …

  • MJ

    Though I had heard of blogs, and thought I could ignore the concept entirely, I had a blog-related concept hit me right between the eyes today. The blog genius, who definately had the upper hand in the conversation, talking with me about it wants to use it in his business. Very interesting…
    Thank God you are here to educate me from the very basics to the more intricate parts of blogology.

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  • Great introduction, i’ve been meaning to start a blog for our acting school in los angeles ..this is just the motivation needed..thanks for taking the time.

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  • I just came across this blog. This is a great introduction for beginners!
    In Asia, most businesses still don’t have a blog yet due to ignorance or mis-understanding of the benefits of a blog.

  • Wow. There is a ton of great info on here for us new bloggers. Its great to read stuff that is not totally over my head all the time.

    Thank you for taking the time to help us.

    You are going in my bookmarks for sure.

  • Jeanette Stewart

    I am not sure where to begin. I was simply surfing when I stumbled upon Problogger. I believe I have been on site for at lest an hour and a half. I visited this page because I wanted to register for your beginners course. I have not found the place to register for your course, although there were several comments about the exercise for week #1 .

    I did subscribe to your email newsletter as it appears it will contain info useful to a neophyte such as myself. I would like to take your beginners course for the same reason. I signed up with Newsvine and WordPress 2 days ago, but I have not yet written any articles. I understand that these two blogspots are not considered to be websites, otherwise I would provide you with the URL.

    Please inform me how I can register for the beginners course.

    Thank you

  • My question is. Can I use this avenue known as blogging to advertise or bring people to my website.. I sell instructional videos on Faux finishing . I know there are thousands of people who would benefit from the videos/Dvds but I do not know how to advertise my site… If you have any other suggestions I would appreciate some feedback thank you veronika.

  • Just wanted to say I love your blog and it has inspired me to start my own. I have been a web designer for a long time and always heard about blogs but never started one untll now. There is so much information on this site to take in and I look forward to learning a lot and hopefully reaching the level of someday. Anyways please come by sometime and say a word on my blog.

  • Frank Wong

    Before the rising of the internet culture certain people like to record their encounters, feelings, thoughts, concerns, planning, etc in a book called diary. Blog, though not the same, is something silmiar.

    Diary is what people try to keep private to themself with intention of self reference and introspection. But blog is electronically published with purpose of seeking for resonant, responses, possibly with commercial implication. Don’t forget that the business aspects of the internet is its positive side and crucial to its existence and growth.

    If you are running a business such as Microsoft, Yahoo, Google, or the like, don’t you want to know what people think? Provide a channel called blog is better than using a survey fom or call it a confession. Not mention that people are willing to submit and to express their opionions by themself.

    Blogs help open up people’s inner world. Reading someone’s blog you can quickly know what the person’s up to. Perhaps it has political implication too. Don’t we worry about national security?

  • Thank you ProBlogger for your blog and all the wonderful information you provide. I very much like the blog’s style, content and comprehension. Thanks to you, I’ve learned so much already and you present much to think and ponder on also.
    I am just starting into blogging and have some questions. I do not think I will approach blogging as a money maker, but am going to view it as a way to air/broadcast my unique perspective of things. Ponderings: thinkings/questions, morals/ethics, society, the human race, environment, things like this, but your topic on blog theme has ignited a whirl of thoughts as to how I am going to umbrella all of these.
    But in the mean time I have some technical questions:
    1) When does a blog have to start paying for space?
    2) can the author of the blog rearrange (over time) past blogs and postings?
    3) Do you in your course provide information as to the rules (of law) of publication and broadcasting for blogs?
    4) Where can I learn how to tweak and customize (style and design to my liking and preferences) my blog?
    5) are there better or shall I say more advantageous blog spaces for certain types of blogs? And if so, how do I find out about them?

    I look forward to hearing back from you.

    Again THANK YOU, your service to beginners is wonderful! I have your blog listed in my blog at the top of the list of “Favorite Blogs.”

    Have a grand day!

  • Hi Darren, I read this “What is a blog” post of yours a few months ago. I liked your style of writing. I think I’ve read over a 100 of your articles. I think a blog is basically a timely (updated frequently) online column by an author or authors with a topic that may be loose or very niche focused. There is some kind of focus to it and it seeks to give information and opinion. I’ve not narrowed it down further than that.

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  • mars

    Problogger is amazing

  • Hi there ,
    I think you guys are amazing ,for making new people to understand,what exactly blog is!also making them more confident to start up with courses on blogging.
    well i am also very much impressed about blogging,i want to be blogger after reading all this articles on Web!
    but i think i need more step by step info…moreover like you have any sort of study material…where i can join and then start blogging!
    plz let me know ASAP

  • I appreciated the reading of inputs from others about what blogs are. It would seem that entries to blogs are based on individual past experiences and philosophies and that can be both agreeable or controversial with previous entries. How can blogs be beneficial? I don’t know. I am a Christian and my concept of life is based on what the biblical scripture offers. This, no doubt, immediately turns off many others who would contribute to a blog. If you read the text of the website, you will see that I care about people and the welfare of family values and moral and structural stability in society, business and government. Can my concerns be of value to blogs or will they simply stimulate anger in readrs?

  • You dancced all around what is blog!!!! Can’t you use PLAIN SIMPLE basic english???

  • Hi,
    I just expressed my views in blog about my views about a hotel which is relation.Which i had a bad experience about it?Its my uncle’s co brother.They are threating me that will move to court in India to delete the blog.

  • My thanks to Darren Rowse for answering those questions with regards to blogging. I don’t think I can call myself a blogger yet since I have not entered into any heavy discussions on the web. I have only heard about blogging on TV and I am very interested in how the topics are chosen. Who is the Be All who gets to decide what we will be speaking about? Can our topics range from global warming to death and the hereafter or do we discuss the intricacies of web analysis. One thing that I’ve been told is that blogging allows you freedom to express yourself and that’s pretty cool!

  • Brenda

    Thanks for the great information. There is so much out there it is hard to know where to start. Is it really possible to make money blogging?

  • sure is Brenda – although keep in mind that most people don’t make a lot. Some do – but like with anything, it’s a minority who are able to ‘go pro’ with their blogging.

  • Hi,
    I am a new blogger, I find your tips and information are really useful for the beginner for this series, I will recommend your site to my friends.

  • hi, thank for the usefull information that you give on this site, i hope it will give me strength to make my blog more good

  • Excellent blog. So many things for a novice blogger like myself to learn from here. I would like to link my post to this blog post, if that’s ok with you.

  • Rani

    I am a new blogger, i read your site its really useful for the begginer. But I think its quite difficult to understand to new bloggers. I would like to request you to make it more easy by giving examples, I hope it will give me strength to make my blog more good.

  • I’m new to blogging too. I’d really need to know the technical as well as the rationales behind blogging. So many questions.

  • toblogornot

    I am contemplating blogging. I’ve just read a little content on one blogger’s site. What a tosser, I thought about this person. However, it suggested that one can blog about whatever the hell they like: swear, rant, exaggerate, use a ton of cliches (like ‘totally’ boring!); and good luck if that’s what attracts an audience. The internet is a two-edged sword, can cut both ways.

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