Some facts about blogging
The word blog is actually a blend of two words, web and log into one. Blending words is a practice that dates at least a century back. It is called a ‘portmanteau’, which literally means coat carrier but in modern French the word is used for coat stand. There is a difference with contractions such as ‘do’ and ‘not’ and a ‘portmanteau’ blends words that relate to a singular concept such as smog (smoke, fog) and spork (spoon, fork).
The word portmanteau was first used in the book ‘Through the Looking Glass’ by Lewis Carroll (1871) where Humpty Dumpty tells Alice how the words ‘slithy’ (‘lithe’ and ‘slimy’) and ‘mimsy’ (flimsy and miserable) came about.
First blogs – online diaries
The first blogs were written as online diaries where people would document their personal lives. It is generally believed that one of the first bloggers was a student called Justin Hall from Swarthmore College in the USA. He began personal blogging as early as 1994.
It wasn’t until 1999 that blogging rose faster in popularity and this occurred simultaneously with the introduction of hosted blog tools. That year Blogger.com was launched and has since been taken over by Google in 2003.
Blogging and its purpose
It didn’t take long before it became clear that blogs were a great way to break and shape news stories. It also gained popularity as a tool for opinion forming and when it became more widely used by politicians the role of blogs as a news source established itself more and more.
At the moment blogs are used for many different purposes – personal, corporate, photo – to name a few and bloggers can update their blogs via their mobile devices while on the go. There is even a day that is dedicated to blogging. August 31st is BlogDay and on that day bloggers from all over the world are urged to recommend five new blogs to their readers to promote new previous unknown blogs.
Unfortunately it’s not all good news. As a result of vicious threats and insults one female blogger had to cancel a speech at a conference. Therefore we now also have a blogger’s Code of Conduct which hopes to enforce acceptable blogging behaviour with moderate comments and self-regulation.
After all we are only human…