One of the more fascinating things about the high-tech blogosphere is the people working for big-time blogs such as TechCrunch, ReadWriteWeb, GigaOm, Engadget and Mashable who write multiple stories a day, all day. They write in the morning, they write in the afternoon and they write late at night. They are writing machines.
Having been a pretty prolific newspaper reporter for 15 years, I can tell you that my production was nowhere close to what these bloggers pump out each and every day. Frankly, it strikes me as exhausting given writing is mentally and creatively taxing, especially if you writing multiple posts a day.
Given the non-stop pace and pressure to produce and compete, I’m convinced the lifespan of a big-time blogger can’t be that long. It seems inconceivable someone could writing that many posts for years and year. So my take is two to three years is likely the most a blogger could stick it out before considering other less arduous endeavours.
This struck home when Chris Ziegler announced his departure from Engadget to pursue other interests. It appears Ziegler was not particularly pleased with working at Engadget after the blog’s sale to AOL, and it may have encouraged his decision to move on. At the same time, the AOL sale may have given Ziegler an “out” after pounding away at Engadget.
In an ideal world, bloggers would have more time to write posts and fewer posts to write a day. But the reality is blogs are built on an economic foundation of volume. The more stories created, the more pageviews generated and, in theory, the more advertising revenue. At the same time, blogs need to keep their costs in check so having a small team of highly-productive bloggers is another economic reality.
It may be a great way to run a business but it is probably not a great environment to keep your writers long-term.