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Is Blogging Dead?

Blog And if it is, can I go back to bed?

I raise the question because some esteemed legal bloggers have been chewing on it recently (that's a legitimate basis, right, Bruce?). Bob Ambrogi, who in the not-too-distant past patrolled the hallways here at LBW, proclaimed on Wednesday that "reports of blogging's death have been greatly exaggerated," and, as evidence, cited 15 legal blogs of relatively recent vintage that he believes to be of value to the legal community.

Scott Greenfield took issue with Bob's proclamation yesterday. Obviously, not with the notion that legal blogs continue to exist, and people keep right on starting up new ones, but with the notion that many of them serve a useful purpose. Here are Scott's thoughts on a random sample of the 15 blogs Bob listed:

What I found was distressing.  No conversation.  No synergy.  Limited analysis and little effort.  But what struck me clearly between the eyes is that the ones I looked at could have been taken out of the social media marketer's handbook.  Trying to look informative, these were created for the purpose of self-promotion, marketing.

Having clicked on a couple of the links myself (no way of knowing if they're the same ones Scott tried), I agree. Some of the blogs Bob mentioned appear to be designed to drum up business. Scott is pretty clear that he finds this distasteful:

It's not that Bob's position is necessarily wrong; they are new and they do contain posts with information.  They just aren't part of any blawgosphere that I recognize or want to be involved with.  These could have been written by some paralegal at a law firm who was paid to spend a couple hours a week to craft a blog so that the law firms involved could say they were right there, on the bandwagon, with all the other cool law firms.  And this is what Ambrogi sees as a thriving blawgosphere.

But is blogging for client development purposes a crime? I, obviously, have perused quite a few legal blogs in the course of my duties here at LBW. And I can usually tell pretty quickly whether one is primarily a "marketing" blog or one designed to generate discussion and debate. Isn't it OK that both kinds of blogs exist for their intended audiences? Or is the wheat truly getting buried in chaff?

Posted by Eric Lipman on September 3, 2010 at 10:15 AM | Permalink | Comments (5)


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