The blogosphere is made up of all blog
A blog is a type of website or part of a website supposed to be updated with new content from time to time. Blogs are usually maintained by an individual with regular entries of commentary, descriptions of events, or other material such as graphics or video. Entries are commonly displayed in...

s and their interconnections. The term implies that blogs exist together as a connected community
The term community has two distinct meanings:*a group of interacting people, possibly living in close proximity, and often refers to a group that shares some common values, and is attributed with social cohesion within a shared geographical location, generally in social units larger than a household...

 (or as a collection of connected communities) or as a social network
Social network
A social network is a social structure made up of individuals called "nodes", which are tied by one or more specific types of interdependency, such as friendship, kinship, common interest, financial exchange, dislike, sexual relationships, or relationships of beliefs, knowledge or prestige.Social...

 in which everyday authors can publish their opinions. Since the term has been coined, it has been referenced in a number of media and is also used to refer to the Internet.


The term was coined on September 10, 1999 by Brad L. Graham, as a joke. It was re-coined in 2002 by William Quick
William Thomas Quick
William Thomas "Bill" Quick, who sometimes writes under the pseudonym Margaret Allan, is a science fiction author and self-described libertarian conservative blogger...

, and was quickly adopted and propagated by the warblog
A warblog or milblog is a weblog devoted mostly or wholly to covering news events concerning an ongoing war. Sometimes the use of the term "warblog" implies that the blog concerned has a pro-war slant. The use of the term "milblog" implies that the author is with the military.-Description and...

 community. The term resembles the older word logosphere (from Greek logos meaning word, and sphere, interpreted as world), "the world of words", the universe of discourse.

Despite the term's humorous intent, CNN
Cable News Network is a U.S. cable news channel founded in 1980 by Ted Turner. Upon its launch, CNN was the first channel to provide 24-hour television news coverage, and the first all-news television channel in the United States...

, the BBC
The British Broadcasting Corporation is a British public service broadcaster. Its headquarters is at Broadcasting House in the City of Westminster, London. It is the largest broadcaster in the world, with about 23,000 staff...

, and National Public Radio's programs Morning Edition
Morning Edition
Morning Edition is an American radio news program produced and distributed by National Public Radio . It airs weekday mornings and runs for two hours, and many stations repeat one or both hours. The show feeds live from 05:00 to 09:00 ET, with feeds and updates as required until noon...

, Day To Day
Day to Day
Day to Day was a one-hour weekday American radio newsmagazine distributed by National Public Radio , and produced by NPR in collaboration with Slate. Madeleine Brand served as host since 2006...

, and All Things Considered
All Things Considered
All Things Considered is the flagship news program on the American network National Public Radio. It was the first news program on NPR, and is broadcast live worldwide through several outlets...

have used it several times to discuss public opinion. A number of media outlets in recent years have started treating the blogosphere as a gauge of public opinion, and it has been cited in both academic and non-academic work as evidence of rising or falling resistance to globalization
Globalization refers to the increasingly global relationships of culture, people and economic activity. Most often, it refers to economics: the global distribution of the production of goods and services, through reduction of barriers to international trade such as tariffs, export fees, and import...

, voter fatigue
Voter fatigue
In politics, voter fatigue is the apathy that the electorate can experience when they are required to vote too often.It is often used as a criticism of the direct democracy system, in which voters are constantly asked to decide on policy via referenda...

, and many other phenomena, and also in reference to identifying influential bloggers and "familiar strangers" in the blogosphere.


In 1999, Pyra Labs opened blogging to the masses by simplifying the process of creating and maintaining this personal web spaces. Prior to the creation of Pyra’s “Blogger,” the number of blogs in existence was thought to be less than one hundred. In 2005 a Gallup pole showed that a third of Internet users read blogs at least on occasion, and in May 2006 a study showed that there were over forty-two millions bloggers contributing to the blogosphere. With less than 1 million blogs in existence at the start of 2003, the number of blogs had doubled in size every sixth months through 2006.

Today it is estimated that there are more than 172 million identified blogs, with more than 1 million new posts being produced by the blogosphere each day.


In 2010 Technorati study, 36% of bloggers reported some sort of income from their blogs, most often in the form of ad revenue. This shows a steady increase from their 2009 report, in which only 28% of the blogging world reported their blog as a source of income, with the mean annual income from advertisements at $42,548. Other common sources of blog-related income are paid speaking engagements and paid postings.

Blogosphere as a Social Network

Sites such as Technorati
Technorati is an Internet search engine for searching blogs. By June 2008, Technorati was indexing 112.8 million blogs and over 250 million pieces of tagged social media...

, BlogPulse
BlogPulse is a search engine and analytic system for blogs. It uses automated processes to monitor the daily activity on blogs and generates trend information. It was initially created by IntelliSeek, and was later acquired by the Nielsen Company, and currently owned by NM Incite, A Nielsen /...

, Tailrank was a site that provided a feed of content on the World Wide Web that's being discussed across the blogosphere. The site continuously scanned blogs that had been registered with it, and composed an index of "top stories" that had been cited by the various blogs it had scanned.The focus...

, and BlogScope
BlogScope is a search engine for the blogosphere with advanced analysis and visualization technology.BlogScope is outcome of an ongoing research project at the University of Toronto...

 track the interconnections between bloggers. Taking advantage of hypertext
Hypertext is text displayed on a computer or other electronic device with references to other text that the reader can immediately access, usually by a mouse click or keypress sequence. Apart from running text, hypertext may contain tables, images and other presentational devices. Hypertext is the...

 links which act as markers for the subjects the bloggers are discussing, these sites can follow a piece of conversation as it moves from blog to blog. These also can help information researchers study how fast a meme
A meme is "an idea, behaviour or style that spreads from person to person within a culture."A meme acts as a unit for carrying cultural ideas, symbols or practices, which can be transmitted from one mind to another through writing, speech, gestures, rituals or other imitable phenomena...

 spreads through the blogosphere, to determine which sites are the most important for gaining early recognition. Sites also exist to track specific blogospheres, such as those related by a certain genre, culture, subject matter or geopolitical location.

Mapping the Blogosphere

In 2007, following six weeks of observation social media expert Matthew Hurst mapped the blogosphere, generating the plot to the left based on the interconnections between blogs. The most densely populated areas represent the most active portions of the blogosphere. White dots represent individual blogs. They are sized according to the number of links surrounding that particular blog. Links are plotted in both green and blue, with green representing one-way links and blue representing reciprocal links.

DISCOVER Magazine described six major 'hot spots' of the blogosphere. While points 1 and 2 represent influential individual blogs, point 3 is the perfect example of "blogging island," where individual blogs are highly connected within a sub-community but lack many connections to the larger blogosphere. Point 4 describes a sociopolitical blogging niche, in which links demonstrate the constant dialogue between bloggers who write about the same subject of interest. Points 5 is an isolated sub-community of blogs dedicated to the world of pornography. Lastly, point 6 represents a collection of sports' lovers who largely segregate themselves but still manage to link back to the higher traffic blogs toward the center of the blogosphere.

Merging with Other Social Networks

With the outstanding growth of the blogosphere within the past decade, the blogosphere has developed as its own network of interconnections. In this time, bloggers have similarly begun to engage in other online communities, specifically social networking sites, melding the two realms of social media together.

According to Technorati's 2010 "State of Blogosphere" report, 78% of bloggers are using Twitter, with much larger percentages of individuals who blog as part-time jobs (88%) or who blog full time for a specific company (88%) using "the microblogging service." Almost half of all bloggers surveyed use twitter to interact with the readers of their blog, while an astounding 72% of bloggers use twitter for blog promotion. For bloggers whose blog is their business (self-employed), 63% use twitter to market their business. Additionally, according to the report, almost 9 out of 10 (87%) bloggers currently use Facebook.

Blogging Niches

Within the blogosphere, several sub-communities have developed. These communities are largely divided by genre. Blogs are often identified by a specific genre or topic, such as travel or politics.
News blogs
Citizen journalism
Citizen journalism is the concept of members of the public "playing an active role in the process of collecting, reporting, analyzing and disseminating news and information," according to the seminal 2003 report We Media: How Audiences are Shaping the Future of News and Information...

 has become so popular, they have created steep competition for traditional print newspaper and news magazines. The Huffington Post, ranked most powerful blog in the world by The Observer
The Observer
The Observer is a British newspaper, published on Sundays. In the same place on the political spectrum as its daily sister paper The Guardian, which acquired it in 1993, it takes a liberal or social democratic line on most issues. It is the world's oldest Sunday newspaper.-Origins:The first issue,...

in 2008, has become the go-to for breaking news for people around the world. It is only one of the many news blog (often attached to printed publications) that has come to dominate current event reporting.

Political blogs
Political blog
A political blog is a common type of blog that comments on politics. In liberal democracies the right to criticize the government without interference is considered an important element of free speech...

 are often tied to a large media or news corporation, such as "The Caucus" (affiliated with the New York Times), "CNN Political Ticker.", and the National Review's "The Corner."

Gossip blogs are also a particular niche that has grown extensively with the development of the blogosphere. This movement can greatly be attributed to the popularity of "Perez Hilton
Perez Hilton
Mario Armando Lavandeira, Jr. , better known as Perez Hilton , is an American blogger and television personality. His blog, , is known for posts covering gossip items about celebrities...

," a celebrity and entertainment media gossip blogger. His blog posts tabloid photographs of celebrities, accompanied by captions and comments. Web traffic to the often controversial and raunchy Perez Hilton site skyrocketed in 2005, prompting similar gossip blogs, such as TMZ
TMZ can refer to any of the following:*The Thames airport in New Zealand*Thirty Mile Zone, a zone in and around Hollywood, California that is considered to be "local" for purposes of entertainment industry union work rules...

, Jezebel
Jezebel may refer to:* Jezebel, wife of King Ahab*Jezebel, in the Book of Revelation 2:20 a prophetess in the church of Thyatira* Jezebel , starring Bette Davis and Henry Fonda* Jezebel , a blog aimed at women...

, and the Superficial, to gain popularity.

Food blogs allow foodies and aspiring chefs alike to share recipes, cooking techniques, and "food porn," for others to enjoy. Food blogs such as 101 Cookbooks, foodgawker, Smitten Kitchen, and The Bitten Word serve as a sort of online cookbook for followers, often containing restaurant critiques, product reviews, and step-by-step photography for recipes.

Fashion blogs
Fashion blog
-Definition:A fashion blog can cover many things such as specific items of clothing and accessories, trends in various apparel markets , celebrity fashion choices and street fashion trends...

 also became their own larger than life sub-community following the explosive growth of the blogosphere. Fashion-conscious consumers are offered an insider's view into the fashion industry thanks to blogs like Racked, The Cut, and Fashionista. Besides fashion news blogs, street style blogs have also become exceedingly popular. Bloggers like Scott Schuman (The Sartorialist), Tommy Ton (Jak and Jil), Jane Aldridge (Sea of Shoes), Bryan Grey-Yambao (Bryanboy), and Tavi Gevinson (Style Rookie) are are all among a not-so-select group of fashion bloggers who now consider updating their blog a full time job. These style mavens are able to earn considerable livings through advertising, selling their photos and even providing their services as photographers, stylists, and guest designers.

See also

  • Bloggernacle
    The Mormon blogosphere is the Mormon portion of the blogosphere...

  • Customer engagement
    Customer engagement
    Customer engagement refers to the engagement of customers with one another, with a company or a brand. The initiative for engagement can be either consumer- or company-led and the medium of engagement can be on or offline....

  • Group Blogging
    Collaborative blog
    A collaborative blog is a type of weblog in which posts are written and published by more than one author. The majority of high profile collaborative blogs are based around a single uniting theme, such as politics or technology....

  • Global Voices Online
    Global Voices Online
    Global Voices Online is an international network of bloggers and citizen journalists that follow, report, and summarizes what is going on in the blogosphere in every corner of the world...

  • J-Blogosphere
    J-blogosphere is the name that some members of the Jewish blogging community use to refer to themselves. Blogs with a Jewish focus are called J-blogs. The name "J-blogosphere" was coined by Steven I. Weiss when he was the leader of "Protocols," a now defunct group J-blog, and one of the first...

External links

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