A Blog Identity Crisis

What is Your Blogging Identity?What is your blogging identity?

This weekend I spent some time away from the online world. I enjoyed the celebration of America’s independence with family and friends, breaking away from the Tweets and blogs for a couple days. Over the past couple days I’ve spent considerable time thinking about the future direction of Life Without Pants. Taking these brief ‘hiatuses’ have a funny effect on us web-folk – they force us to take a step back and think ‘ Who am I? What am I doing here? What’s the point of it all?’

We’re not necessarily doubting ourselves, but rather the (online) medium in general. I love to write, I am passionate about facilitating conversation and providing a forum for people to communicate, debate, and share ideas. But as the community continues to grow, as my blog continues to gain notoriety, I worry that I am becoming too specific, that I am appealing to only a very limited twenty-something audience and failing to engage a large number of (potential) readers out there.

The other ‘identity crisis’ I’ve been going through is the actual direction I want the blog to take. Do I ‘typecast’ myself as a twenty-something blogging about his philosophy on life, or do I focus more on my professional pursuits of web/social media marketing, advertising, journalism, and public relations? Can there be a happy medium or do I have to choose a ‘theme’. Is it too early in my career to be concerned with labeling myself? Is my theme being dictated by the articles I’ve already written? Is it really up to me or am I ultimately defined by my community of readers?

And lastly I think about back to when it all began – not only with Life Without Pants, but years ago when I decided to start blogging about my experiences on the web: What’s the point? Are we here to simply speak our mind and hope some people out there are listening? Or are we all after ‘fame and fortune’?

Some questions to ponder:

  • Does one achieve more success by specializing and targeting one demographic of reader, or finding a way to relate topics to a broader community?
  • Do you define your blog or does your blog (and blog community) define you?
  • What’s the point of blogging? Is there a universal theme of sharing thoughts in a public forum, or is it more self-centered? Obtaining recognition, receiving praise, adding readers, making money, etc?