Are blogs becoming more like journals? Maybe. (If you look at certain segments of the blogosphere–like Livejournal, which is barely connected to the blogosphere at all–it’s clear that some segments are already very journal-like.)
This Post article examines Japanese blogs, which tend to be more journal-like–nonconfrontational, anonymous, etc, and American blogs, which are often used as tools of self-promotion. As in, gosh I hope someone important Googles me today! (This is what goes through my mind when I wake up every morning. Not really.)
Blogging in Japan, though, is a far tamer beast than in the United States and the rest of the English-speaking world. Japan’s conformist culture has embraced a technology that Americans often use for abrasive self-promotion and refashioned it as a soothingly nonconfrontational medium for getting along.
In all the blog entries she has composed at home and in cybercafes over the years, Kenetsuna has never written a discouraging word — not a single critical reference to bad food, lousy service or rip-off prices, she said. Such harshness, in her view, would be improper and offensive.”If I think the food stinks, I don’t write it,” said Kenetsuna, 43, who makes a living writing advertising copy for a weekly newspaper for female office workers in Tokyo. “There is a part of me that feels sorry for the restaurant, if it were to lose business because of what I write,” she said. “I don’t want to influence the diners.”
[Joichi] Ito [, an expert on how people around the world use the Internet,] predicts that in the United States, as mobile phones and wireless networks improve, blogging will, in effect, become more Japanese.
That means constant connection to one’s blogging device while writing shorter but more frequent blog postings. It also means less chest thumping about wicked politicians, less trumpeting of one’s expertise and more chatty postings about cats, kids and lunch.
[WP-Japan’s Bloggers: Humble Giants of the Web]