If people can read your blog post in a few seconds they’re more likely to do so, writes technology veteran and blog pioneer, Dave Winer (@davewiner).

You are probably already blogging in short form on Twitter and Facebook, but doing so, per Winer, has some big shortcomings.

  • Not everyone can read your Facebook posts. Your posts surface only as Facebook’s News Feed algorithms present them.
  • Your blog allows you to add hyperlinks, style text, add subheads, give a post a title. None of this is possible on Facebook or Twitter.
  • Before giving your posts to a closed silos, Twitter and Facebook, give them to the open web.

There is a lot of truth in what Winer is saying. Blogging did not eminate from someone saying we ought to put lengthy articles on something called blog software. Weblogs as they were called were an offshoot of Bulletin Board Systems (BBS), Usenet Groups, Message Boards and the like. Short form contributions most often commenting on what someone else wrote in short form.

Others defined Weblogs as people logging their activity on the web. Thus a weblog.

Look at one of the most extraordinarily successful law blogs. Pennsylvania Appellate Attorney, Howard Bashman, has been publishing his blog, How Appealing, for almost fourteen years. Each post is two to three lines long documenting a case and result.

Bashman’s posts are tad short for my liking, but when I entered the blogosphere over twelve years ago blogs were brief conversations that ran blog to blog. I read something another blogger wrote and I shared a good portion of it with my readers offering my take. The other blogger in turn saw my thoughts. It’s how we learned and networked.

Rather than feel challenged to pen a blog post at the end of the day, I may have posted a couple or three posts a day. Rather than forty-five minutes to an hour per post, a blog post took fifteen or twenty minutes. And why not, I was having a conversation, not writing an article or a book.

Image courtesy of Flickr by tmcNY

  • I agree with the idea that short blog posts are perfectly fine. Over the last few months I’ve been writing more blog posts that combine the idea of sharing a link, like I would on Twitter, but also pulling a quote and adding my own thoughts. Some of them are just those two paragraphs, some of them warrant more time and words, but it’s getting ideas out without waiting until I have an hour to write something longish on a topic. Besides, there are actually occasions when my ideas are just one or two paragraphs. Why make it longer? ;-)

    • Maybe we can take blogging back to the future, Mike?