The life expectancy of a blawg
Talking about the high attrition rate of academic law blogs written by those in academia, the drug and device law came to some startling conclusions about blawgs. In essence: we're all doomed!
Even the academics can't do it! The professors can't feed their blogs; it's too much work.
And those guys spend their lives wearing tweed jackets, smoking pipes, and thinking great thoughts!
So today's question was this: How long does the average practitioner-blogger last?
So, the life expectancy of many of the blawgs out there doesn’t look too great. What I've witnessed in the UK student/graduate blawgsophere certainly bears that out.
This brings out a number of other issues – such as why different people keep a blog.
When I first started my legal blog back in February 2007, I’d had an F1 blog for 3 years though I had only been posting frequently in the last few months of that. I was finding that my F1 blog had become a dumping ground for all kinds of topics. I was in the final year of my LL.B and all was going well and had intended law actually to be an outlet for my legal musings.
Over time, though, I think the reasons behind why I blog have evolved but the principal reason hasn't changed.
So why do we all blog? There are a lot of reasons, I suppose, including:
Sense of community; debate and feedback from like-minded folks; sense of release; sense of creativity; self-promotion; financial gain and so on.
I think those blogs are that created solely (or at least mainly) as a means of self-promotion, where the blogger doesn't truly enjoy wallowing in the subject matter are at the greatest risk of failing quickly. To build a decent readership takes time and effort and, on top of a day at work or studying, can't really be forced. Or at least not for long.
Even now, I don’t pretend to fully understand the lure of blogging or what's the driving force behind that sense of 'I really should get a post out today'. And I know that's not just me, having heard other bloggers say much the same thing.
The sense of creativity is definitely one of the main reasons why I still blog. This was particularly the case when I used to tinker around creating/modifying pictures for each post which I do far less of now. But I carry on posting nonetheless.
Maybe there's still some cathartic effect that's inherent in posting to a blog - even though Law Actually doesn't take the form of a journal or diary. But whatever the reason, it boils down to one thing - enjoyment.
Ultimately, you need to blog because you enjoy it. Academic blogs which aren't a labour of love, like any blog, I guess, will ultimately fail. Should blogging become more of a chore than enjoyment I wouldn’t hesitate in retiring from the blawgosphere for good.