The 8 percent of American adults who blog are more likely than the rest of the adult population to share media online. That’s according to “Bloggers: A Portrait of the Internet’s New Storytellers,” a new report from the Pew Internet & American Life Project.
Bloggers number 12 million within the U.S. population, and are more active in content creation on the Web. Seventy-seven percent of bloggers have shared artwork, photos, stories or videos online, compared to 26 percent of all Internet users. While the report looks at the population of people 18 and older, an earlier report on teens said 19 percent of the 12 to 17 demographic authored blogs.
“I think bloggers already are people interested in [content sharing],” said Amanda Lenhart, senior research specialist at Pew Internet. “It’s a self-selecting group, people are already posting, and the blog is a vehicle with which to do that.”
LiveJournal and MySpace are the predominant destinations for bloggers; the two sites host a combined 22 percent of blogs. Additional sites and software people said they used to manage blogs include Blogger, Xanga, FrontPage, Typepad, Blogspot and Movable Type. Two percent of bloggers say they build their own blogging software. A recent JupiterResearch report on corporate blogging suggested companies with the resources should create blog authoring software in-house.
The popularity of social networking sites among bloggers is what Lenhart called a “perfect storm of both sharing content as well as connecting with others.”
Text comprises 80 percent of blog content. Bloggers also use multimedia content to enhance the written entries of the blog. Added media include photos (72 percent); images and graphics (49 percent); audio (30 percent) and video files (15 percent).
While users can post photos directly on their blogs, photo sharing sites like Flickr and Webshots are working with bloggers to make it easier to add a photo to the blog that’s already been posted to the community site.
To create community, 87 percent of bloggers allow comments; 41 percent post a blog roll or friend list but only 18 percent enable RSS feeds.
“Certainly bloggers are using these inter-connective tools to help create a sense of interaction if not community,” said Lenhart.
The report was based on two random-digit dial tracking surveys about Internet use. In the second survey, Pew found 29 percent of bloggers stopped posting to their blogs since the first data set.
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