Becoming Professional: A Blog

Why don’t young people blog?

Posted on: April 17, 2010


I am in my early twenties and female. This is important. Recently it was suggested to me that I write a post about finding inspiration for blog posts because young people often have problems finding the inspiration for blogging. That post will come, but that comment jogged another thought in my head. Why don’t young people blog more?
 
According to Technorati’s 2009 State of the Blogosphere, only 7% of bloggers were between 18 and 24 years-of-age. There’s a big leap between 7% and 25%, the percentage of bloggers between 25 and 34 years-of-age. Why?
For those visual learners out there, here’s the Technorati graph:

In order to find this answer, I asked a Linked In Question and punted it out to my Twitter Followers. Basically it was an open-ended survey to which I got 15 good responses. They all had a variety of opinions and different experiences motivating those opinions.

Now, a disclaimer: What I’m reporting here are not word for word responses. I’m reporting on the subjective understanding I walked away with from the Linked In Answers and Tweets.

Let’s start first with the most popular answer:

Lack of something to say, wisdom.

I can understand this. Out of my 15 responses, 7 said that this was a reason young people don’t blog- they don’t have anything they feel they can add to the conversation. The general consensus is that with age comes wisdom, and with wisdom comes something to add to the blogosphere. I, obviously, don’t agree with this. I’m blogging and I’m fairly certain all I can add is my commentary on what I see, and since I’m pretty much shiny-new and most people blogging are not, my commentary is hopefully enlightening. Still, if I was on the outside looking in, a young person just contemplating blogging, I can see this concern floating in my head.

The second most popular answer was:

Millennials don’t have a long enough attention span to blog.

This made me pause. I know I have ADD. My tag-line is “Hyperactivity that Works,” after all. (Blog site rebranding in process. Just wait and see!) But I blog. Let’s, then, analyze the responders. Seven individuals mentioned attention span or dedication in their responses. The respondants were both young and old. Out of the people I could guess the ages of, only three of my total respondants were in the 18-24 age bracket. Two of them mentioned attention spans or dedication. The rest were older, though I wont say how old (Linked In isn’t Facebook. It doesn’t have a birthdate field). Their reasoning? With all of the stuff we’re doing, young people just don’t have the necessary dedication to sit down and craft a blog. Apparently most people in this younger age bracket start off with high-flying ideas and then get bogged down in the details. Thus the comment on attention span. They quit shortly after starting the blog and then move on.

After these two common points, all my respondents started mentioning various other points and their commonalities became scattered. For instance, four said that young people use Twitter and Facebook instead of blogging. Two mentioned that yong people are just too busy–not that we get bored with it but that we don’t have enough time to blog. Two responses mentioned that young people aren’t interested in blogging because they’re too busy with being young and aren’t interested in the intellectual pursuit.

The reason I found the most insightful, though, was actually given by a young person and just this one person. He said that young people are addicted to the consumption of what the internet has to offer, not the creation of that offering. Well put and interesting. My thoughts? I agree with the most common reasons I’ve highlighted. I think that young people feel they don’t have enough to say of value and that the work that goes in to making something of value is a too burdensome for most.

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4 Responses to "Why don’t young people blog?"

Interesting results, Kate! As the results show, young people typically don’t blog.

But I’m guessing those who do bring very insightful ideas to the blogosphere…they tend to be those who are committed to their blogging and have fewer younger competitors.

Wish you the best in your blogging!

Mike

Blogging definitely takes more commitment than I originally thought, if I’m going to put out only quality blog posts. Thank you for your encouragement!

I think it depends on what you are looking for and where. For example if you go onto a Xanga.com (a blogging community), there are quite a few young people who blog.

Good point, David. There are, indeed, young people who blog. I’m just wondering why there aren’t a ton of them. We are outnumbered by older folks.

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Who Am I?

I am a Digital Native who is trying to puzzle out what exactly that means. I share my thoughts on social media, digital business models, and PR here on this blog.

I am currently getting my Masters in Digital Marketing from Hult International Business School, having gotten my B.S. in Marketing from Arizona State University. Everything is on track and I am making headway towards my dream: World Domination... or being a productive, helpful citizen and marketer. Whichever comes first.

Don't hesitate to get in touch. I Tweet daily at @KateDavids and also have a science fiction and fantasy blog (maskedgeek.wordpress.com) and Twitter (@Masked_Geek).

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