Deconstructing Blogs

Erik Wilde

Erik Wilde, Deconstructing Blogs, Online Information Review, 32(3):401-414, 2008.

Purpose: A growing amount of information available on the Web can be classified as "contextual information", putting already existing information into a new context rather than creating isolated new information resources. Blogs are a typical and popular example of this category. By looking at blogs from a more context-oriented view, it is possible to deconstruct them into structures which are more contextual than just focused on the content, facilitating flexible reuse of these structures. — Design/Methodology/Approach: We look at the underlying structures of blogs and blog posts, representing them as multi-ended links. This alternative representation of blogs and blog posts allows us to represent them as reusable information structures. This paper presents blogs as a popular content type, but the approach of restructuring Web 2.0 content can be extended to other classes of information, as long as they can be regarded as being mainly contextual. — Findings: By deconstructing blogs and blog posts into their essential properties, we can show how there is a simple and universal representation for blogs. This representation allows the reuse of blog information across specific blog or blogging platforms, and can even go beyond blogs by representing other Web content which provides context. — Originality/Value: The approach presented in this paper is a novel approach of mapping a popular Web content type to a simple and universal representation. The value of such a unified representation lies in exposing the structural similarities among blogs and blog posts, and making them available for reuse.


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