Blogs: An electronic addiction (of types)
June 15, 2014
We all have our favorite websites on the internet for various reasons. I wanted to share mine with you and discuss the specific category they would fall under and why. These days blogs vary in content–you have sports, movies, music, technology, family, travel and everything in between–so it is easy to find something that interests you, as a reader. At the same time there are also different varieties these blogs come in such as:
• Professional/semi-professional: A professional blog is of a very high standard where there are several posts a day and you consider the blogger to be full time. A semi-professional blog tends to not be revenue oriented but can still have a few ads present and are not updated several times a day.
• News: Has several authors and resembles and online newspaper. A face is often associated with the blog to give readers someone to follow and connect with; sharing via social media is an important aspect.
• Recreational: Captures a passion for a very specific thing. They are not out to get product support.
• Aggregator/link sharing: Characterized by link sharing, with little or no original content occupying the page.
• Group: A collaborative work to centralize content.
1. Perez Hilton (professional blog)
Celebrity juice not from concentrate. This is probably one of those blogs that a lot of people read, but we feel guilty talking about it. Yes, I love reading Perez Hilton’s website because I love getting the dirt on what’s going on in Hollywood (and wherever those popular A-list celebrities travel to–okay, you are right, Perez does not leave anyone out so F-list too). It may be strange to think of this blog as a professional blog when you think about the specific content–photos that sometimes include silly captions–but it is. Perez Hilton does deliver the flavorsome news and like many news sources his website does give you that personality to follow. However, the Perez Hilton blog is a one man show, unlike many of the other top blogs of today. Traditionally, blogs such as the Huffington Post are considered news blogs and include multiple authors. Perez is a full time blogger, making a large amount of posts a day. According to a 2013 report, Hilton’s blog is one of the top income generating blogs on the net and raked in a very subtle $3,500 a day. Perez Hilton is known for being edgy and pushing the envelope, so in all technicalities we can consider the blog a hybrid of sorts (between a news blog and a professional blog)–but for the purposes of this exercise I’m going to stick with PerezHilton.com being a professional blog.
2. Vans Warped Tour (semi-professional blog)
My favorite summer music festival, ever. I have so many great memories invested in this tour and I enjoy reading all of their updates on the artists, new tour features, the stages, merchandise, and everything in between. A few years ago the website was a lot more geared towards fans interacting with one another because it featured a message board that could be found on the very front of the page–I loved that. Now, however, there isn’t a message board at all. Rather, a news tab can be found at the top of the website where users can click on it for updates and stories from the tour (they also load automatically when you are on the main page of the website). This blog is out to get support from the music community for the Warped Tour product, so we can consider it a semi-professional blog. First of all, there is minimal advertising on the blog–the only ads visible are for those companies that sponsor the tour. Secondly, revenue is not directly made because of the ads on the Warped Tour website since the only visible ads are from Warped Sponsors. As far as how many authors actually participate in this blog–I can tell you that no author name is able to be identified on any of the blog posts leading readers to believe that a single person is behind the postings as the voice of Warped Tour. Posts are made inconsistently so new content is not available everyday. I would love to change the format back and make it a more fan friendly blog where fans can comment and create content in the message board area. Other than that, I think it is a very informative blog with fun content (i.e.: the live webcast that took place this past Friday) that keeps drawing me in to support the brand. The last thing that I would change would be including social media sharing icons on posts so that readers can easily send the information to their friends on different platforms.
3. Hamsterwatch (recreational blog)
“What is this?” I’m sure you are asking yourself, and for a very valid reason. Hamsterwatch is a website for those of us who are obsessed with the show Big Brother (BB for short) to have a place on the internet to read reliable insider scoops along with extras like photos of the contestants from before they went in the Big Brother house, what former houseguests are up to and more. I found myself typing semi-professional blog and then changing it to recreational blog in the Hamsterwatch heading–eventually changing it back to semi-professional and then to recreational blog one last time. While the idea of Hamsterwatch is very specific and only appeals to a very clear-cut audience, it does have some advertisements present. The blog itself is not trying to pull anyone in to support any type of product they have created, it is simply a blog that posts content about a popular tv show and the people who appear on the show. Hamsterwatch is mainly one person but has grown to have a few different contributors during the seasons–one including Big Brother season 15 houseguest McCrae. If you access the website right now, it looks a little different than it normally would during a BB season. Big Brother season 16 is getting ready to air on CBS at the end of the month (June 25th) so until then, the front “splash page” is reminding readers that the live feeds are at a discounted price through CBS and they can also donate to Hamsterwatch since it’s a free website for us all to enjoy. The only change that I would make to Hamsterwatch is making it more aesthetically pleasing to the eyes. I think this would make differentiating links to different content and sections easier to identify from regular text. I also believe this would feature the ads that are displayed on the website more prominently.
So, what’s your type? Which blogging style do you prefer to read?