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Blogging journalists pt 7: Discussion and conclusion: “The writing on the wall”

The final part of the results of my survey of blogging journalists relates some of the findings to wider research into blogging and journalism, and also looks at some of the differences between sectors and industries.

Blogging has grown and developed considerably in the years since the studies of journalism blogs by Robinson (2006) and Singer (2005) – indeed, three-quarters of respondents had only started blogging since that research was published (in that time the BBC, for instance, expanded from its first blog in December 2005 to 43 in less than a year (Hermida 2008 [PDF]))

Respondents frequently spoke of a rapid transformation by their employers from resistance to blogs to wholesale adoption, in which commercial considerations have played an important role. These ranged from search engine optimisation (blogs help improve the rankings of news websites on search engines such as Google), to “bringing readers back more often”; “a cheap way of getting lots of content online and … resulting ad impressions” (Respondent 113, UK, freelance), to a perceived opportunity to make money, and a way of protecting against the threat from citizen media and the declining state of the news industry itself: Continue reading

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