Talk about a “Tech Crunch”: Will FriendFeed Eat Everyone’s Blog?

It ate Steve Rubel’s (so it may be a gourmet.)

It’s certainly been chewing a little bit on mine (so then again, it might not be.)

Will FriendFeed eat the blog as form and forum?

I ask because there’s been a fair bit of discussion lately about how people’s discussions about blog posts are migrating over to FriendFeed and Plurk and Twitter (when it is actually up.) And of course, much of that discussion is on FriendFeed.

This trend been described as content fragmentation- though that’s not entirely apt. With a good aggregator, it’s more like content consolidation- it’s just not in the comments section of a particular blog.

As noted in the blog Broadcasting Brain recently:

You could compare this situation to an artist who puts a lot of work into a painting, but who doesn’t get to hear or see all of the reviews about his or her work. They may be frantic to get feedback about their work, but that feedback may be spread across dozens of conversations, including little groups of people that huddle together to talk about the artist’s painting..

Understandably, that can be frustrating for a blog author who is hoping to engage readers in a dialogue. But it shouldn’t be necessarily- the conversation is still going on, they’ve just lost control of the location. In fact. sometimes that shift leads to more interesting and protracted discussions. But it does mean the author has to go LOOK for them instead of just hitting reply.

However, what it does not herald is the swallowing up of the blog form as a whole. The blog has not become the digital equivalent of a crazy person on the corner shouting out their truths at an uncaring world. It just means we’ve begun moving away from the Web1.0 model of a static exchange of comments on a blog to a more fluid and rapid form of dialogue via other technological tools

What do you think? Do you find you are commenting less? And if you are commenting, where do you find yourself commenting? Do you think conversation and commentary will become aggregator-driven because it offers more context? Do you think the blog will be displaced, swallowed whole by FriendFeed and its like?

UPDATE: Mark Evans just noted that this trend also may be an indicator of information overload. People may be too busy managing their own streams to comment on someone else’s. That too is a very worthwhile argument and a very interesting take. (Wish I’d thought of it):

Think about it: many people who are the most predisposed to make comments are likely using Facebook, Twitter, Friendfeed,, Google Reader, Plurk, blogging and reading e-mail. The more services they use, the less time they have to do other things such as comment.


4 comments so far

  1. Mike on

    Pretty much all the feedback I offer online is either via e-mail or on discussion forums. Maybe that’s a sign of my age…

    I really don’t know enough about Friendfeed, Twitter, etc. to offer much of an intelligent comment. I still like getting most of my news through Web sites I know and like. Some are electronic version of newspapers and some aren’t. I’ll also participate in discussion forums tied to those sites.

    As for blogging, Twitter, Friendfeed, etc., I just don’t have the time. I can see their value. They’re just not for me right now. I still like some offline pursuits like reading and running. Add in a healthy dose of gaming, a full-time job and a family and I don’t really have time for much else.

  2. Ironic on

    THought you might find this interesting.

  3. Mike Bekiaris on

    Artists hearing every single comment about their work will never happen. Some viewers will talk to the artist right away and some like to generate an opinion after discussing it with other viewers.

    Is it a worry over lose of control? “I blog, therefore I must have all discussions about my work on my site.” I think those few bloggers that think this have to get over the “administrator” feeling, even though they’ve waited so long to get it.

    If you are going to publish work publicly be prepared for others to decide where they will discuss it publicly.

    View the rest of this discussion on Friendfeed. 😛

  4. abbymartin on


    LOL! I loved your closing (though maybe I should tell you that on FriendFeed?)

    Thank you for yet another comment- your comments rock in that they are thoughtful, smart and funny.


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