Blog as Living Totem


I have been blogging since the middle of last year and have been reading blogs since 2005. I think about this every time I post. Am I using the right media to make this stick? How will I be doing this in two years? The following option is one possible direction/analogy.Totem

There are the standard text/image blogs, video blogs (vlog), audio blogs & mobile blogs (moblog). They have become a collection of information and hopefully interaction. My favorite part of reading TechCrunch on the weekends is waiting for a good fight to unfold. It’s interesting to think of what a blog could become if there were a focus on interaction. Right now bloggers put information out there and see what kind of interaction bubbles up often writing specifically to get a reaction. The primary issue in my mind is timeliness. When you come to a blog, you read the post, which could be several hours or several days old and you can read the comments below and could potentially comment. Again, this is done after the fact and in all likelihood with someone moderating.

If a blog embraced a session/event model and then invited authors (SME) and secondary contributors (commentors) to participate, each with their chosen medium for sharing information (video, images, text, etc), the blog would take on a more interactive character. To get to a session model, the interaction would need to utilize web based IM with the capability to allow for media inserts (audio, mobile video, etc). Authors & contributors input would be highlighted differently to determine the source. This would be similar to a smart mob with an online focus. Of course mobile is online as well and the goal would be to get multiple mediums used/viewed and therefore the PC is the best delivery platform to really be immersed. I believe this would make a blog a deeper snapshot of a subject and in time create a living totem.

A totem is defined as:

An object serving as the emblem of a family or clan and often as a reminder of its ancestry; also: usually carved or painted representation of such an object b: a family or clan identified by a common totemic object.

Which is related to totenism and is defined as:

A system of social organization based on totemic affiliations.

As authors and commentors we come together to share ideas and provide one another with information and most importantly perspective. This loosely coupled clan creates small totems that speak to the ancestry of the group and the group’s maturation.

In my opinion, if we were to utilize a session model, the totems created would be far more robust and provide a deeper understanding and a diverse set of perspectives around the subject matter. I may try this in the future to see how it goes and am open to suggestions.

By Michael Myers