Drawing the Line


What is the difference between a Blog and an Online Journal?

Being an avid self-proclaimed blogger, I wonder what makes my WordPress Blog a blog vs an online journal? I mean, I’ve only started blogging less than a year ago, so I’m still learning and defining my blog. But sometimes I ask myself what makes my blog a blog and not an online journal?

The true definition of a blog is a web log that provides commentary and/or news about a certain subject. This contrasts an online journal which consists of mostly daily experiences, social commentaries, writings, and other thoughts that one might find on a paper diary/journal. Any yet, I find both definitions true but lacking. Blogs came into existence with the formation of Web 2.0. Web 2.0 redefined the Internet not as a tool for information and communication, but a tool for sharing and communicating as a global community. So then how does that effect blogs and online journal writing?

Yes, a blog provides commentary, whether it’s about politics, society, or about a certain issue. However, doesn’t a blog also communicates and interacts with the global community as defined in Web 2.0? Can’t an online journal be called a blog? Look at Brotherhood 2.0; it’s clear that it’s a creative form of communication between two brothers. However, looking at the mass followings of Brotherhood 2.0, conveniently called the “Nerd Fighters”, one can conclude that this brotherhood documentary is more than an online journal; it’s a blog. Another fine example is PostSecret which dates back to 2005. PostSecret provides commentary on life through the global community which contributes weekly to the site. Without the community, PostSecret would not exist. So an online journal can be a blog, under the condition of the Web 2.0 community involvement. But the question now is how does one measure community involvement to make it a blog?

Looking at my blogroll, also know as “People with Pants”, I have linked my “blog” with those of my friends and others whom I read. Does qualify to make mine a blog? I read and link to them and they do the same in return. And yet, somehow, I feel that I’m really stretching it. Or am I?

Looking back at old posts, I can not only say I provided commentary about the last days of Archbishop Quigley and now my current school. I also incorporated the Web 2.0 community, whether it was through YouTube featuring the Chronicles of a Half-Marathon videos or my Harry Potter spoiler study. However, my favorite community sharing that happened recently was when one of my friends posted to her blog, which then I responded in returned, only to have another friend responding to mine. Sharing thoughts, ideas, and information; isn’t that what Web 2.0 about? So would you say my “blog” is a blog?

Looking at my friends who have been longtime bloggers: Katharine, Karen, Erica, Christine, Cassie, Jackie, Becky; would you consider your blog a blog or online journal? And then my friends who are new bloggers: Andy, Liz, Sarah, and James; would you consider yourself a blogger? As for me, I’m still new to this whole blogging thing, but I do enjoy it, though I’m still trying to define my blog.

(P.S. Read my friends blogs.)


6 thoughts on “Drawing the Line

  1. Ironic: I’m listed as a longtime blogger but linked to my brand new blog. Ha!

    I feel that a journal is a bit more private. In a blog, you might write about some of your emotions, but certainly not all of them since it could be read by the entire Internet world. I have a blog, but also a journal. What I write in my journal is much different than what I say in my blog. I would say that what you have linked is more of a blog, rather than a journal.

  2. I say that I blog, instead of journal. And I do agree with Erica, I write my entries knowing that I am not only writing for my friends and family but also for the whole of the internets. I blog the thoughts I want to share with the world at large! and I journal things that I want to keep to myself.
    btws, I actually don’t consider myself a “long-time blogger” even though I had a site previously, because I used that site differently.
    I have more I could say…I probably should have just written a post and linked to you. as per usual.

  3. Hey there…
    I have no idea if I have a blog or a journal…I guess I’ve never thought about it. Now I am, though…:)
    Also…when you scroll over the links to all the blogs, a window pops up that says “Related searches” or something like that…and for my blog, it said “Ecuador, volunteer work, quarks.” How does it know these things? I’m a little creeped out…it fits a little too well…
    Hope you’re well! 🙂

  4. but isn’t the difference b/w a journal & a diary (in the original sense) was that a diary more private than a journal? journal as thoughts, diary for feelings?

    Then again, for guys it will always be called a journal

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