Why Does Newsweek Spell Blog-osphere Like That (With a Hyphen)?

· Weblog Concepts

Just got around to reading the Steven Levy article on blogging in Newsweek online. It seems like a fairly accurate and balanced, if shallow, introduction to the concepts. One interesting comment he makes in a kind of phony blog they use to illustrate the concept is that if there are supposedly 500,000 bloggers out there, how come you see the same hundred or so all linking to each other?
It’s just the old ‘A List’ angle again, but that’s like comparing people in general with famous people. There are always stars—some shooting stars and others that rise every night—in any movement (in the sense of a large number of people doing the same new thing) and that’s great but that’s not the essence of what’s interesting. By definition those are the people a journalist is going to find and who are going to get good at answering the questions.
I’m glad he starts his piece with the story of a high-school blogger, because in some ways that says a lot more about the medium than that a few people have used it to make themselves famous and a few other have learned how to extend their existing Q factor into the blogosphere (no hyphen).
What’s more interesting to me is the cascade of microecosystems. The high school kid in the article became more popular through blogging. He built his reputation by putting his thoughts out there. He didn’t get a link from kottke or Instapundit. He got friends in his real life. He influenced his own sphere. That’s where the action is, in your own life.