According to Slate, it's the beginning of the end for blogs. Based the Sports Illustrated cover story theory – which implies that any person or team touted on the cover is doomed to fail – Slate's Daniel Gross concludes the fun and games are over within the blogosphere as established conglomerates claim a stake through acquisitions and/or investments while the rest of us scramble for B, C or Z-lister status. The impetus behind Gross' article is a recent cover story in New York magazine about the “haves and have-nots of the blogging boom”. Frankly, Gross and, for that matter, Nicholas Carr are missing a key point about the the blogosphere. Sure, there's some money to be made from banner ads and AdSense, and there's certainly no lack of new voices emerging (some of them interesting, some of them just noise), but the real power of the blogosphere is the impact it is having on established industries which have seen a new mainstream communications medium quickly emerge. This is why the blogosphere really matters – not as a business dominated by acquisitions, venture capital and advertising – but a medium that inspires and compels change. Perhaps I'm totally biased given I've got the blog tatoo and membership card but it's happening and the sooner people realize it, the sooner they can position themselves to take advantage of the blogosphere.
Update: I like Blackfriars take on the blogosphere:
“So is blogging topping out? I don't think so, but the blogging bubble
may be. But there are a billion Internet users out there looking for
content online. That makes the market for creative content bigger every
day. Any market with a billion customers is an interesting business,
whether Wall Street thinks it is or not”.
Tris Hussey pipes in that “Blogs are moving from the tech niche to the cocktail party set.” That's good 'cause now I can stop talking about Nortel.