“Hello world, is anyone there?”
The long-yet-sporadically-running Bunsen Blog rises from its slumber to greet a world it recognizes less and less as time progresses. A sort of Rip Van Winkle of digital prose, the humble blog (née Web Log) has maintained an existence on the Darwinian Internet much as the Coelacanth has survived the passage of time: staying out of the way of the bigger fish in the sea and making for itself a niche role in the larger environment.
Blogs still exist in many forms, largely relegated to the fringes or niches of the web. But while social media has almost entirely replaced blogs as the archives of the quotidian, the blog maintains a level of elevation by virtue of its exclusivity (ironically, given its original over-saturated pedigree). In a world dominated by 144 character limits, the vast ocean of writing that can take place on a blog is a major differentiator. Granted, the bar is still set rather low for the quality of writing (anyone can start a blog about anything – and essentially has). But in an attention-deficit culture where 30 seconds is an eternity, quality by itself actually stands for something. As the popularity of blogs waned, their role as the everyman’s soap box faded. That mantle was taken up by social media, leaving only the dedicated souls who felt the desire to expound upon their thoughts in a paragraph … or 10.
So even as the Bunsen Blog may for all intents and purposes be an anachronism at this point, I can’t help but think it can still hold value for the thoughts and reflections that rarely have fertile ground to flourish in the ephemeral world of social media. Is it a romanticization influenced heavily by my nostalgia for a bygone era in which I had relatively copious amounts of time to dawdle with writing with no particular need? Of course it is! But even with that sizable caveat acknowledged, I still find value in indulging in some good old fashioned web logging.