Mo’ Bloggin’! Mo Bloggin’!
MoBlogs. Or, to be somewhat more current (yes, even after three years, MoBlogging has taken on a more retro connotation!), Mobile Blogging!
Blogs were once the domain of the part-time but seasoned weblogger–Hunched over his or her laptop, basking in the dim of the early morning hours; holed away in a spare bedroom that doubled as a makeshift office space; parsing out and disseminating rants and earth-shattering revelations to a few but devoted followers.
Ah, but that was so last week!
Today, blogging has now taken on a less bohemian and more cosmopolitan persona as individuals embrace their Smartphones
as not just mere recreational tools for social networking, but as a means of increasing and cultivating business activities and aspirations by maintaining a streaming presence via blogging of their current activities. And this not only includes the upload of text, as there are vblogs
(video blogs such as youtube
)) and photo blogs (think flickr
). Citizen Journalist
can upload his or her latest capture from the streets to a personalized web site via a mobile hosting service that can allow for wireless transmission of information from-well, anywhere!
I’m In With the In Crowd!
The early days of Mobile Blogging were rather rudimentary. Well, what do I mean by “early”? The original premise really hasn’t changed save for the addition of really cool apps, advanced data gathering software, GPS and better real-time interactive capabilities, voice-command and of course the utilization of Smartphones rather than cell phones. Oh, and QWERTY type pads! Factor in that all this happened in the last 4 years or so, and we really are now just witnessing the early days of this technology.
So who’s incorporating this little niche into their repertoire? You name it! Advertisers; seasoned journalists; aspiring journalists; old school bloggers who have been blogging since their laptop days (you know, the Pleistocene Era….); high school kids; graphic designers; programmers. How about that guy who bails hay for his cattle? Heck, anyone with a camera phone and a Bluetooth can now transmit a quick snapshot of their kids and wirelessly transmit that to a digital frame ready for family viewing (“Gee, look how young they looked just 2 minutes ago!”).
Lest you thought I forget, but yes, the financial prowess afforded by these tools shan’t be overlooked!
The proliferation of free Content Management Systems such as WordPress and Blogger are affordable means of linking to a current web site to drive potential clients or just an audience of avid admirers! Add to that the power of being able to upload status reports, photos, videos, articles and coupons for gummy-worms via their Smartphone and well, to an extent, it becomes an Existential process of projecting one’s consciousness–Wherever you are is the center of the universe!
The ubiquitous social network Facebook for example offers Fan Pages for those who seek to initiate and inform people of an up starting enterprise, or to maintain and cultivate current and new business relationships.
One benefit of all this? Income
. By adding on a Smartphone–and the increase in free apps–to your already existing arsenal of business acquisitions, the overhead for vastly increasing your business presence is really-cheap! Prices will continue to come down and the technology will only continue to improve. That’s a given.
And the various hosting services (free and fee based) that are available are rapidly increasing to cash in on the proliferation of these newfound sole-proprietorships. But for your convenience, here are just a few links to some sites that offer more detailed information about Mobile Blog hosts than a less than formal blog can readily address:
Examples of free Blog Hosts!
“I can stop in any street and talk with people that we meet”
But beyond these more capitalistic motivators is the potential for creating stronger international relationships via the humanitarian potential of this technology. Many journalists have embraced smart phones such as the Apple iPhone as not only an alternative to the comfort features of traditional news outlets, but as a sustainable and viable means to the dissemination of articles, videos, photos and breaking news by the sheer portability of their handheld devices! The list of apps, available software for video, photo, and voice blogging and such nifty little add-ons as geotagging has taken the transient lifestyle of someone like photojournalist to a whole new level. The merging of Social Media with Social Revolution!
Consider what happened in 2009 in the country of Iran.
Outraged that their election may have been stolen, many citizens took to the streets in protest. Out powered by the police, and under a state of Martial Law that block information from leaving the nation, many of the citizens realized that to inform the world what was happening within the country’s border, they had to be resourceful. Dubbed The Twitter Revolution because of the mass dissemination uploaded to Twitter blogs, the citizen journalists of Iran employed their cell phones to record and upload videos, photos and text messages of what was occurring in the country.
When the Island nation of Haiti was hit by a 7.0 magnitude earthquake in early 2010, journalists turned to their more advanced iPhones to record the events that unfolded in the damaged country.
Though more recreational from their initial introduction, iPhones and their like, have gained greater acceptance by serious business-minded people. And the proliferation of manufacturers catering to this growing market has proffered more serious consideration of this latest “fad” as a legitimate and viable tool for any trade.
With the increase of mobile devices, and the usual array of compatibility issues, we are now just witnessing the emergence of new apps as well as mobile websites that offer multi-search tools for mobile phones. These search tools automatically detect if you are viewing from a mobile browser, and help to minimize typing as you search.
So it can detect whether you are on a laptop or a mobile device? Spyware? Come now, even China has been kind enough to include a few Trojan Horses in their software at no extra cost.
It’s The End of The World As We Know It….
….And feelin’ pretty good about it. We no longer exist in an era of single-purpose devices. Yes, dedicated items such as mp3 players, game players, digital SLR cameras, camcorders and the old reliable laptop will be vastly superior to the multifunctional capabilities of a Smartphone that incorporates all these features. But as a portable office on the road, this convenience more than makes up for any image or audio quality you may sacrifice. And for the mobile blogger, it’s your office away-from your home office!
And the key factor in all this is the interactivity of the modern information media. People expect and demand immediate gratification and instantaneous feedback via RSS feeds, online forums, and even wireless internet in a local coffee shop! Heck, there are even businesses that now blog real time updates on activities for their local clientele!
Specialization of course can be derived from an all encompassing device such as the Apple iPhone. An individual for example now has easy access and entry in the world of journalism, or take guerilla marketing to a whole new level! WordPress, Blogger, Twitter-even Facebook and YouTube has allowed people to remain more connected to our environment, and there is no longer an excuse in alienating oneself from global events. Even the recreational photographer has access to digital camera fully outfitted with HD video!
The new world of Web 2.0 and its vast arsenal of apps continues to bring together more individuals with common causes who wish to have an impact on the word. The available technology such as Twitter, various CMS, Mobile blogs–even Facebook– has allowed for this greater freedom to express immediate concern once only afforded to those who ranked highly in the traditional news media, politicians and even celebrities. With the advent of interactive online blogs, an individual can wield an opinion with nearly as much prowess as William Randolph Hearst!
And we thought this was all so Utopian. Did I mention that you can upload that photo of the kids to Grandma’ digital frame in the time it takes to press “enter”? Well unfortunately, citizen journalism has a few obstacles to overcome–namely, the boundaries of privacy versus a free press. The Patriot Act that was implemented by the previous Third Reich has spawned a whole new air of paranoia, and the ease of employing iPhones to record and upload images of anyone and everyone has brought about some arguments for concern. Where does free speech and a free press begin and end in a public forum and is your privacy being invaded by these makeshift journalists on the hoof?
And do you really want to see Granny water boarded as an unwitting participant in your globetrotting abandon?
Hmm, I sense a new blog post in the making–better hit the road!