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Blogs and Blogging: Perspective of a Common Man in India

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Blogging has completed 10 years, Yes 10 years ! and this phenomenon has become quite popular in the Western countries. Some people opine that blogs will become as popular as email, in coming years.

Blogging is slowly gaining the status of “must have” communication tool, with every 3rd person either reading or writing the blogs regularly in developed Countries.  

But What about India ? is it the same scenario in India ? unfortunately not ! 

I will list down the reasons why not…but before that have a look at one of the discussion threads  that I had on an India based forum. Some excerpts from the message thread.

Message 2 by DNK
Re: Which Indian Blogs Do You Love to Read?

Don’t read too many Indian blogs, find them too elitist
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Learning

Message 3 by Trakin 
Quote:
Originally Posted by dnk
Don’t read too many Indian blogs, find them too elitist

What do you mean elitist. You cannot really generalize blogs…

Message 4 by DNK 
Quote:

Originally Posted by trakin
What do you mean elitist. You cannot really generalize blogs…

99.9% of the blogs write about things that concern only a very small minority of the Indian population.

Message 5 by Trakin
Quote:
Originally Posted by dnk
99.9% of the blogs write about things that concern only a very small minority of the Indian population.

Very True…and I agree with you. At the same time you have to also keep in mind that Internet penetration in India is next to zilch (hardly 3%). So already 97% are gone…
The other part – “that it does not concern many” does not seem to be factual statement. Have a look at blogs like WATblog.com, India Economy Blog, labnol and many more who do a great value addition to most peoples knowledge with their perspective of things.
So although the blogs are currently not very widespread, I see people slowly moving from impersonal news portals to more “personal Blogs” of their choice.
I have no doubt that Blogs will become an intrinsic way of communication few years down the line, just as email is today !

Message 6 by DNK 

Most of the blogs load very slowly and mostly write about stuff which I find irrelevant. (I can’t do much about my internet connection – I have experimented with 4-5 different ISPs). I find it cheaper and faster to read the news from magazines and newspapers

Although, this is an opinion from just one person, I can vouch that these are the three common reasons why popularity of blogs in India is not growing rapidly.

1) The idea of blogging and blog reading is categorized as being too elite. That means only a narrow segment of people do it. Although, it is not true that blogging is elite / for elite, the perception of common man is such.

2) The internet connection is slow. Most of the Indians are still on slow dial-up connections. This is also one of the major complains my sister has back in Pune, India. She says, my blog is too slow for her connection and she does not have so much time to spend on the ramblings that I publish ! If she has this reason to give for my blog- can I expect others to read it ?

3) The cost of browsing the Internet is quite high. The statement “I find it cheaper and faster to read the news from magazines and newspaperssays it all !

Other than that,  

4) the other major problem is that many Indians still don’t even know what blogs are. I read a survey done by WATblog couple of months back, and it potrayed quite a dismal picture of blogging awareness in India! This is about metros and ‘A’ cities. Forget the interiors of India altogether.

There are some basic reasons directly proportional to popularity of blogging like Home PC penetration, Internet/ broadband penetration and education itself.

However, India is on a growth path and infrastructure is improving and I am remain optimistic about the growth of blogging in India. It may happen at a slow pace, but it is sure to happen.

Let us wait and watch.

  1. Mac says

    What would you comment now on this same blog.
    How much progess did India have made? Do you think it has risen exponentially in the span of two years. Do you think that it has far exceeded your expectation?

  2. F. Colton says

    Think of it this way. We are ahead of the game and when India does come online, your readership will soar!

  3. trakin says

    @Colton..You are absolutely right. My stats show that more than 50% of my traffic comes from US and UK..and most probably these are Indians residing abroad, so I guess they are a big chunk of my readers
    @Mesmerized…Again rightly said..the knowledge it self is lacking…My sister did know what blog is till couple of months back and she is a Trainer..so you can imagine…She is going to give it to me if she reads this :)

  4. F. Colton says

    Well said. I think your readers need to remember there are many Indians outside of India that read your blog and others on a regular basis. They like the fact they can keep in touch with the goings of India without tracking down an India newspaper outside of India.

  5. Mesmerized says

    I agree with you, Also an additional reason for not opting to blog is the basic lack of knowledge of what a blog is? When i ask a couple of my friends to start a blog the 1st look i get is that of “i am talking greek” and the next question they ask is “what is a blog, and what do i do with a blog?”

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