February 19, 2011

The death of the blog and an interesting book idea

This morning I took the B.A.T., otherwise known as the Bloomberg Assessment Test. I discovered that it was largely a subject matter exam with some aptitude testing involved. For the most part, though, the data sufficiency, logic, and critical thinking sections were diminished in scope to the extent that they were largely ineffectual (It would be hard to draw any valid conclusions about a person based on 5 mid tier questions). As a result, I am sure I performed only marginally well and was reduced to guessing frequently as I have never worked on Wall Street, which is really what the test measures. However, based on the overall difficulty, I am sure that one month's study of the various subject matter would have made for an impressive performance.

How does this bring me to the subject of the title of today's post? Well, in an excellent example, I'd love to point out that it doesn't and that this is exactly why blogs are dying. Frankly, blogs are dying because people are idiots. Or, rather, people are poor writers. My initial ramble really resembles an observations of a diary more than a valid deconstruction of the B.A.T. In addition to the fact that most bloggers are poor writers (this is often accompanied by poor mechanical skill, as well), blogs are the obnoxious younger brother of the 24 hour news cycle. Most blogs, if they ever get any press time, whatsoever, get it because the blogger is in the midst of a currently evolving national/international news story. For my part, I am so inconsistent that there was no way for me to have been able to capitalize on the potential traffic I could have generated by blogging about the goings on in the immediate aftermath of the shooting of Gabrielle Giffords.

Blogs are also dying because people are reading less. This is a fundamental problem of the internet. In the early days, everything was text based, you had to read to access the internet, but in the days of youtube, Hulu, webcomics, and Web 2.0, users no longer have any patience. If it cannot be summed up in 140 characters, no one is reading it. For example, no one is reading this post. No one will read this post. If they do read this post, and they tell me, "Hey, I read your post it was [insert opinion here]." I might give that person $5 (hint hint). This has been demonstrated by numerous intellectuals who have studied the volume of traffic that blogs receive. Largely, they all agree that blog traffic is tapering off. To be frank, I am the target demographic of blogs and I have stopped reading blogs. For example, I used to follow several hobby and professional bloggers. All of their links now languish at the bottom of favorites tab supplanted by social networking sites, webcomics, and my favorite MMOs (no, I don't play mmorpgs, but I do play mmos).

Referring to my experience with Bloomberg, this morning, I had another interesting idea. This predates the BAT, but was further motivated by it. I am thinking of writing a book that will describe the education that I am receiving in my MBA program. Considering that I will have taken something like 13 courses in the span of one year, I pretty much have a book's worth of chapters, right there. The idea is to basically sum up the most important aspects of each course that I'm studying. That way, people who do not have an MBA and are either thinking about getting one or who want to have access to that knowledge on a basic level, can pick up the book, read it in a few weeks, and better understand their business, their boss, or whether an MBA is right for them. I'm thinking that if I have time, over the coming summer, that I might draft the book and see if I can't find a publisher. If I write it in accessible enough language, I can see it being a good airport seller.

Posted by Mendon at 2:36 PM | Comments (0)