Wednesday, December 19, 2012

0 Looking Back to Look Forward: A Really Honest Post, Part 3


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OK, this is the last in a 3-part series of posts about social media and the running community. (If you didn't catch the first two posts, click here and here to view parts 1 and 2, respectively.) After reading the first two, this one will seem a heck of a lot shorter in comparison. :)

So, now that I've reflected upon the state of the blogosphere as it applies to the development and historical timeline of the online community, as well as my own personal experiences as a participant in that sphere, it's time to look forward.

What will happen to blogging as social media evolves? Will it still hold a relevant place amongst all the other competing forms? As humans seem to have a never-ending, inner need for storytelling and sharing information, I can't see blogging going away any time soon, even if it no longer holds the same place in the consciousness of the Internet.  Sure, it doesn't have the same sense of immediacy as other types of social media like Twitter, Facebook, or Google+, but it has something else going for it: You don't have to reduce your thoughts to a soundbyte. :) Blogging allows for complexity as well as a more complete array and depth of thought. And that's something you can't get from Twitter, Facebook, or Google+. :)

Of course, this very human need to share and tell stories applies to the world of running as well. Many, if not most, runners seek to connect with other runners, either on a person-to-person level, or to commune with their thoughts. As we read, we put ourselves in their shoes, go through the motions as they experience trials and triumphs in their training, compare notes, and/or gain insights that help us see things we might've not otherwise have noticed. Simply put, we blog and read other runners' blogs because we are human. Because we are motivated not only to share, but also to discover new facts, updates, and revelations, both through others' words and our own as we write.

Sometimes writers, through their perceptive observations and their eloquence, are able to give voice to the the thoughts and feelings about similar running-related experiences we've always wanted to say, but just haven't as yet been able to find the words. That can be a very powerful moment, which has the ability to not only move us but also inspire us as well. Many of our experiences that we write about are universal and yet somehow also remain distinct.

As we share our stories about our running journey and the information we learn along the way, we provide a framework for a collective of knowledge and wisdom, and we pass all of that along to other runners through blogging. We read to seek what motivates other runners, what makes them tick, and to learn how they went about accomplishing their goals and dreams, so that we too can find a pathway to do the same.

The future of blogging is much like our own: no one can be quite sure what the future will hold except for the new paths through uncharted territory that we create for ourselves. :)

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