5 years of Blogging and Digital Communications

It was a little more than 5 years ago that I started blogging with this post.  How interesting is it that my first post related to the quality and purpose of sportswriting and now 5 years later, my writings about newspapers have evolved from my annoyance with them, to my hope that they will survive ?

In the beginning , blogs were the easiest way to communicate an opinion. Then as with now, writing a blog doesn’t mean that anyone would take the time to read it, but sometimes people did. My most popular posts were about Steve Nash leaving the Mavs, the series of posts on Success & Motivation, The Stock Market, and my colonoscopy of all things.

Blogging today, is not the same as it was 5 years ago.  In the early days of blogging, it served as much as mini social networks as a publishing tool.  Many used blogs as a way to communicate with family and friends. I don’t see that as the case any longer.  Social Networks have become the primary means of keeping in touch with those close to you.  Friendster for a minute, then Myspace and now Facebook are the primary means for people to keep each other up to date.  Pictures and privacy  have made the biggest difference.  Facebook its a quick and easy way to share pictures, videos  and updates only among those people you want to see them.  It has become a unique utility, which for many people elminated the need to blog.

Beyond personal communications, blogs have also been used as a broadcast medium by public figures, consultants and corporate executives. Blogs have been the most expedient means to share a point of view, a quick thought , factual reporting and whatever else someone else wants to share to a potentially unlimited audience. RSS feeds have advanced so that it has become incredibly easy for people to subscribe to blogs and quickly determine from the RSS headline or full feed whether or not they want to commit to reading the full post.   However that is changing as well.

Enter Twitter.   Twitter has quickly changed the nature of “broadcast texting”.  While Blogs have been a great way to offer complete stories, Twitter, with its 140 character limit, by its nature is the best suited of options for short bursts of content.  The size constraint makes “tweets” far less intrusive and easy to receive and read on a phone.  Twitter works for what it is designed to do, however its future is not a slam dunk.

Competition is coming strong. I happen to like Facebook Fan Pages (see mine here) . What I really like about my facebook page is the ability to filter messages that I send to followers based on their demographic data. I also like that people use their real names. What I don’t like is that posts are not searchable.

Google just released their new profiles, this is mine. I like the Picassa integration, but its still pretty simplistic.

I think these are just the predecessors to what we will see on mobile platforms. All the IPhone apps are tests for what and how people use their mobile devices. Its going to be very interesting to see where things go.

Five years ago blogging was a big step. Now, the internet has become such a stable home and mobile platform for text and graphics, we are going to see a rush of derivative products that we will strain to keep up with, but benefit from as we integrate them

25 thoughts on “5 years of Blogging and Digital Communications

  1. DEAR MR CUBAN

    PLEASE TRY AND BUY THE PIRATES AGAIN. ID RATHER WATCH SOMEONE DROWN THEN WATCH THE PIRATES. I CAN NOT STAND TO WATCH THE PIRATES HAVE ONE MORE LOSING SEASON. I DONT CARE WHAT THE NUTTING FAMILY SAYS. THEY ARE A BUNCH OF COCKSUCKERS ANYWAYS. THEY RUINED 7SPRINGS RESORT ALSO. IF YOU BUY THE PIRATES I WILL DEGRADE MYSELF TO BEING YOUR PERSONAL SLAVE. I KNOW BEFORE YOU TRIED TO BUY THEM BUT KEVIN MCCLATCHEY DIDNT ALLOW IT. THATS OK. MY FRIEND USED TO HOUSWATCH HIS HOME AND WE USED TO PISS IN HIS LAUNDRY MACHINE. THATS HOW BAD WE HATE THE OWNERS. PLEASE FOR THE LOVE OF EVERYTHING THATS RIGHT TRY TO PURCHASE THE TEAM AGAIN.

    SINCERELY,
    AARON MARKS

    Comment by aaronmarks24 -

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  4. Hi Mark, I thought you’d like to see this time lapse of the crowd arriving at the AA Center last night for the April 23rd playoff game.

    I would really like to make a 1 minute clip of the whole of a game – now wouldn’t that be cool! Hard to get permission to shoot in the AAC.

    Here’s the link. The quality is not too good but I think you will get the idea (the original is super high rez)

    Comment by Jeremy Woodhouse -

  5. http://blogs.elysianonline.com/blogs/derek/archive/2009/03/25/4193.aspx

    It’s interesting reading posts like this from people without a real understanding of the history of social networking on the Internet. Facebook’s “Use your Real Name” method is for the most part pretty new to the social networking scene. I think that feature alone is why MySpace competes with Twitter more than it does Facebook.

    There’s really two ways to participate in an Internet social network and that’s from a position with or without anonymity. BBSes, MUDs, Forums, Blogs and IRC all started from a position anonymity for the user. A user hid behind an Avatar of sorts or a screen name. Facebook and IM began the process of assigning a person to the identity with Facebook being the most advanced of the two. Both types of social networks have a place on the Internet and to think the Facebook way is the way of the future indicates a lack of understanding of the past and how important it is to the present Internet we all use daily.

    The comments and blog posts are interesting and I can only hope posts like this lead to a greater understanding of Internet based social networking. Personally, I blog and twitter with an alias, albeit a thinly veiled alias at this point. I Facebook with known friends. The two serve completely different and independent but equally valid purposes.

    Comment by Derek Licciardi -

  6. Great post! I would have to disagree about the “privacy” of Facebook though. Google Profile and Twitter have one thing that I love, simplicity! Functionality is cool but can make things too time consuming.

    Congrats on 5 years !

    Comment by Ryan -

  7. Congrats on 5 years. You are still out in front of the crowd. Great opinion pieces, sharing years of business experience, and an inside look at the NBA. Awesome stuff.

    Thanks!

    Don Dodge

    Comment by Don Dodge -

  8. I love Twitter to follow “interesting” folks, (like yourself!!) but couldnt’ cope with TweetDeck. Problem is, as mentioned by someone else above, the more people you follow the harder it is to get at the really interesting tweets.

    Comment by Nile Cruises -

  9. Cheers to 5 years. So I guess we have come full circle.

    Sometimes I see you as fearless but it is good to see that even my hero has fears (colonoscopy). Thankfully you are in good health.

    It’s ironic your other two articles are my fears.
    Stock Market and Success. So far I have failed at both. 10yrs trying to achieve them down the drain. Cest la vie.

    Steve Nash a fellow Canadian who won MVP twice. He is Motivated. Ehh??

    It’s funny how we change our thinking over the years. We don’t appreciate newspapers until there almost bankrupt. Then we want them back. I still like newspapers only problem is by the time I get to read them it’s old news.

    Dallas is my favorite show in the past. The shows today are not in it’s league.

    I am getting sick of the internet to be honest. Facebook, twitter,Yim and even espn poker are virus infested areas. Hackers intruding and giving people viruses is ever evolving. I am getting choked about it.

    Good to see your Mavs beating the Spurs.
    Good luck in the playoffs and to another 5 yrs of blogging.

    Whitewoody

    Comment by Whitewoody -

  10. Mark — have you seen this from WSJ? A timeline of 10 years of start-ups… and you’re featured at the beginning!

    http://blogs.wsj.com/venturecapital/2009/03/31/travel-through-time-10-years-of-start-ups/

    Comment by Dave -

  11. I love the blog but missed the colonoscopy experience because it was before I discovered you. Twitter and facebook if you like but please keep blogging. You bring up some interesting topics and perspectives.

    Comment by deb -

  12. Hah!

    My blog’s been going strong for four years now. So I should pass you soon.

    Comment by CaptiousNut -

  13. Mark,

    Congrats on the 5 years. It is funny, just today I was discussing FIOS TV with some coworkers and HDNet Movies came up. A coworker was saying that HDNet Movies shows some movies as a sneak preview before they are released in theaters. I told him that they were movies that your production company produced and that you did that because your company owns HDNet and Landmark Theaters and all. I learned all that from reading this blog so it was cool to pass that info along to someone else. Anyway, I am happy to now be able to watch your networks now that I have FIOS. I could not get your networks on Comcast. I guess they are trying to cheap out on you for licensing? Keep up the good work.

    Comment by Bill -

  14. Congrats Mark, your blog is one of my favorites and your posts are always fun and make me think.

    Comment by HJ -

  15. Mitch,

    You can use a facebook app on your phone to update your latest status too.

    Yea, but I can see the average person seeing that on CNN and then going to Twitter and going why do I want to follow CNN on twitter?

    You are right twitter is faster though.

    Maybe because there are always going to be so many people using so many different micro blogging/social networks that one of the update all your statuses at once websites could be the answer. Or maybe facebook or twitter should just add that functionality in.

    Comment by Joe M. -

  16. Note to Joe:

    Many work places block facebook (and other websites) and therefore a quick tweet is very easy to do from a phone.

    Further, all the CNBC and CNN shows are giving their TWITTER identifications.

    Twitter is fast and easy. I find facebook a little cluttered and poorly constructed. Facebook does have many more applications so I am not so sure it is an apples to apples comparison.

    Comment by Mitch -

  17. It is definitely going to be interesting how everything plays out in micro blogging. While Twitter is out to an early lead, I think Facebook has the advantage for a few reasons:

    1. Real Name – Only thing that hurts facebook on this one is people getting in trouble posting during work. I mean can you turn your boss down when they add you? I still think that real name is the way to do it though
    2. Not as much noise.
    3. Everyone knows facebook and still a very small percentage know Twitter. Just in the last few months I have seen more and more people posting updates on facebook. Slowly facebook will keep pushing this even though all users may not want it as facebook knows it’s the future.
    4.Twitter is relying too much on other people developing applications. If they want mass adoption, they can’t expect people to find all the best twitter downloads. They need to make these themselves and put them right in front of people.

    Comment by Joe M. -

  18. Mark’s colonoscopy experience sounded exactly like what I went through three years ago (age 66.)

    Someone should take a poll of people’s experiences with colonoscopys and publish the results. I am willing to bet it would be 100 to 1 positive experience. Personally I have NEVER heard a negative comment about getting one.

    I am a faithful follower of your Tweets (and blog), Mark. Please keep the faith and continue with them. Very insightful, and entertaining. And tweets are a very effective broadcasting tool. Sort of gives a whole new definition to “broadcasting.”

    Thanks for taking time to do those things.

    Frank

    Comment by Frank in Idaho -

  19. The problem is, with all the new and newer sites, you get too many tweets or responses to weed through. I personally like your tweets and some of them you might actually find funny or informative.

    I still like the blogmaverick.

    Mitch–twitter: imitchm

    Comment by Mitch -

  20. 5 years in blog years is like 20 years in offline changes. (No, I can’t prove it with math)

    Congrats on having a blog this long, and further to that, being as on top of the changes past, present, and future.

    Good work!

    Comment by Marc-Andre Drolet -

  21. Congrats🙂

    Comment by Bruno Rua -

  22. I like that Twitter is not as instrusive as Facebook (for now); I’d like to see even more privacy options on Facebook.

    It seems like we all just want to make the World as small as possible so we can talk to everyone and anyone simultaneously. It is going to be increasingly difficult to filter all the information therefore, there needs to be more control provided to the End-user as communication continues to evolve.

    For now 140 characters is okay until we catch up.

    Comment by Smashmauf -

  23. Congratulations.. who would have known boring sports blogging could have lasted this long! ::sip::❤ mB

    Comment by materialBITCH -

  24. Congratulations

    Comment by Ted Ciricillo -

  25. Congratulations on having the same blog for 5 years and also keeping up on it for that long. Most blogs cannot stand the test of time quite like that. I have just started a blog on wordpress about sports and I hope that I can keep it going. I also agree about the evolution of blogs and how they have basically transformed social networks. We have gone from Myspace to Tweeter and now Google is getting in to it.

    Comment by bravesball -

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