Blog, a shortened form of weblog, is not easily defined. Bloggers themselves don’t even agree on a definition. There are, however, common elements in blog definitions:
- Blogs are found on the Internet.
- A blog contains an individual’s or a group’s thoughts.
- A blog contains an ongoing chronicle of information.
- A blog contains links to other websites.
- According to WordPress, a blog features “diary-type commentary.”
- In order to qualify as an active blog, it must be updated frequently.
Although blogs have been around for a while, the term blog did not appear until online automated publishing systems made blogging accessible to practically everyone.
Types of blogs. A blog’s focus can be broad, but most focus on a specific topic. Common blog topics include politics, sports, finance or technology. These blogs are often monetized, allowing the blog creator to make a profit through advertising. Some blogs are of a personal nature, presenting the author’s thoughts and opinions on a variety of topics.
Blog features. WordPress gives a general breakdown of the typical blog setup. The main section contains a list of articles, chronologically ordered, with the most recent on top. The list can also be organized based on topic. On the side, one can usually find archived articles. The interactive nature of blogs allows for reader comments, normally located at the bottom of the web page. In addition, the blog contains a list of related websites, referred to as a “blog roll.”
Starting a blog. Blogs give everyone an opportunity to publish his or her thoughts on a topic or series of topics. Free blog sites abound. The most popular include WordPress, Blogger and Blogspot.