One of my old professors (and general Africa expert), Chris Blattman, just posted a blog entry entitled, “Is This My Final Blog Post?” (It marked his two-year “blogiversary,” so he re-evaluated his desire to continue posting.) He has gathered quite an army of loyal readers over the past couple years and therefore the article title made a lot of couch-potatoes in the economic development community extremely anxious.
Long story short: it is not his final post and he’ll stay a popular guy on others’ blogrolls. While not terminating his blogging reign, the post did offer a lot of insight regarding the question, “Why Blog?” which I really like:
- It’s fun. True academics like sharing ideas, hearing opposing views and telling their students they have a website.
- It’s educational. Writing on a regular basis makes the blogger have to stay up-to-date with other blogs and related news stories. Furthermore, it requires careful reading, critical analysis, and overutilization of bullet points.
- It’s a good notebook. A blog helps record all those great links you found on Twitter and insights you found on your Professor’s blog. Two months later, I can look back on ideas, comments, or old news stories really easily. Neato.
- It keeps you accountable. Blattman refers to readers “pounc[ing] on his logic” when it is weak. I don’t think I’m at the point where the blog has a critical mass of followers to worry about pouncing. Just knowing that these posts are publicly available, however, does make me a little more meticulous in getting my ideas down. It also (hopefully) makes sure I regularly update this thing and therefore constantly develop my ideas on issues.
Hopefully, all these benefits will hold true with “Change for a Dollar.” Looking forward to a bright blogging future and who knows, maybe a special blogiversary down the road.