Written on April 4th, 2005 at 04:04 am by Darren Rowse

The Invisible Australian Blogger

Pro Blogging News 4 comments

Fellow Australian Trevor Cook has written a great post on the state of ‘new media’ including blogging and podcasting in Australia. He comments that whilst there is incredible growth in the medium of blogging that Australia is really yet to see bloggers rise in prominence as has happened else where.

‘Nevertheless, Australian bloggers have not yet generated the sort of media attention that well-known coups (Dan Rather, Trent Lott, Eason Jordan) have won for blogging in the USA. These “affairs” showed that blogging could change agendas and we are still waiting for some high profile agenda-changing from Australian online media community.’

This is something I’ve been pondering a bit recently. A couple of Australian newspapers have tinkered with ‘blog of the week’ type columns in their technology sections (usually featuring overseas blogs) but outside of this I’m yet to really see blogging mentioned in any real depth in the main stream media here. There is a growing number of the general public who seem to have heard of blogs (I notice a lot of people have some vague idea of what they are) but overall there is little prominence of blogging or individual bloggers despite the numbers of quality Aussie bloggers going around.

This is something I’d like to see change and am keen to work on being a part of - however I wonder what can be done. There are only so many contacts that we as bloggers can attempt to make with reporters - perhaps we need to engage a PR expert like Tony to get blogging’s profile up here.

Read Trevor’s article at Trevor Cook describes the new media, including blogging and podcasting, now available to consumers

4 Responses to “The Invisible Australian Blogger”

  • Interesting that at the same time, this is happening.

    I notice also that the BBC has a piece on blogging it influence here.

    Australia, as I recall, was a little slow on the get-go with mobile phones. But that delay allowed for a much more rapid spread of the technology when people began to adopt them wholeheartedly. Maybe what you’re observing is something similar?

    I think it wasn’t really the “celebrity” blogs who got the genre off the ground–they just happened to be first to the post when the gun went off. Instead, blogs proliferated slowly and quietly for years before anyone paid them any attention.

    Love your site, and I keep coming back. ‘Bout time I got an aggregator, I suppose...

    Ted

    www.metroblog.blogspot.com
    http://blive.blogging.com

  • The problem is cultural, but in terms of PR what we actually need is more diverse media, I’ve had discussions with a number of media people here in Australia and unfortunately at the end of the day they’d much rather quote US bloggers than an Australian.

  • At the moment there are a few things that hamper a higher profile for Australian bloggers.

    For tech blogs, not much R&D or new product development happens in Australia, so there’s not much “inside news” told by Australian bloggers. And we tend to get new technologies so much later than the US or Asia, that everyone else gets the jump on us before we even see the products they’re talking about.

    The same thing happens with movies, TV shows, music, artworks, celebrity stuff, new books, etc. Everything gets released in other countries long before it’s available in Australia, so by the time our bloggers pick them up everyone else has moved on to the next new thing.

    So Australians are conditioned to read US and UK blogs for information about all this stuff. We tend to regard (perhaps subconsciously) Australian blogs as being behind the times, and don’t really spend much time reading them.

    In my experience when I come across an Australian blogger with a good site and good information, the fact that they’re Australian is almost always a little hidden. It’s certainly not immediately obvious in most cases. We mostly seem to try and blend in with the US bloggers, hoping to prove our worth before people make a snap judgement that we’re ‘just’ an Aussie blog.

    Also, the market for Aussie blogs is pretty small compared to US or UK blogs. We just don’t have a very big population of blog readers here, so bloggers tend to chase topics that appeal to a wider international audience. This part, at least, could be turned around if the media started promoting and featuring local bloggers a bit more.

  • Hey, did some mention my name?

    I think the problem of invisible Aussie Bloggers can be partially solved by blogging about Aussie stuff. Because even a lot of Australian blogs seem to about US/Euro issues and news.

    I started aussieblogger.com as an experiment and the response has been surprisingly good, and quick. After only 2 weeks of operation I have nearly 100 daily uniques and an incredibly good page ranking/indexing with Google and Yahoo.

    The ads make me next to nothing, but that’s not the point, I just wanted to probe the niche a little. And as noted earlier, the response has been good.

    I also started aussiematt.com as a personal site, and same thing again, the response was good, and quick.

    I do think that Aussies will flock to australian blogs (sorry, i’m really not trying to stuff keywords here!) if we simply write about Aussie news and events.

    It appears we’re standing on the edge of a hugely untapped market. I will be continuing my experiments. And Darren, keep up the good work mate.

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