See Christopher Connell’s insightful report including interviews with 10 bloggers from around the world – including me (p. 16) on what bloggers really do.
Today, blogging serves as an example of how the digital media have broken down barriers between producers of content and audiences: Those who once passively received information now have the ability to interact with it, to create forums for debate. Content distributed by mainstream producers is mixed, mashed up, refurbished, expanded upon, and released back into the Web with a unique piquancy. The diversity of views espoused via blogging platforms brings with it a host of challenges in the blogosphere, among them, increasing restriction on speech or prosecution for opinions. As bloggers are increasingly targeted in repressive states and treated with the same impunity as journalists, the line between blogs and news blurs–a voice online is of value, whether its owner holds a press pass or not.
An excerpt from my interview:
At first she downplayed the inconveniences, including the almost daily power outages, but after a while, “I took a conscious move away from just framing it in rosy words and talking about the beauties of Ghana,” said the blogger and college lecturer, now Kajsa Hallberg Adu. “Now I tell it from my perspective” with the frustrations (“Sometimes I just want to cry because why can we not get our act together and provide water?”) and joys (the “beautiful opportunities” for students crowding a career fair at her college). Now she labels her eponymous KajsaHA blog as “personal, political and sometimes positive.”