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Teen blogging is sick! (and not in a good way)

The unbearable pointlessness of blogging

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Teenagers are bored with blogging and are moving onto other public confessionals forms.

In 2006 28 per cent of US teen internet users were bloggers. Now only 14 per cent blog today, with 52 per cent commenting on friends' blogs, down from 76 per cent in 2006 (source: Pew Research Center, Feb'10).

Is this such a surprise? Blogging means writing - and that means work for little or no reward. Aside from friends and nosy parents, who reads such teenage juvenilia? Certainly not other teenagers, who can flirt and get their online gossip fixes on Facebook and texting and IM. Status updates are so much easier and sexier than reading long stuff. Besides, the only essays most teens want to to read are ones they can crib for homework.

Twitter is a teen dead-end, too. Soon enough, American high school-age girls, who show "the greatest enthusiasm" for the application, according to Pew, will see the error of their ways.

Pop stars excepted, they have no followers. Let us recall Mathew Robson, the 15-year-old intern at Morgan Stanley, and a rare example of a teenager who says something the rest of us are interested in, with his 2009 research note into his friends media consumption.

"Teenagers do not use Twitter," he wrote. "Most have signed up to the service, but then just leave it as they realise that they are not going to update it (mostly because texting Twitter uses up credit, and they would rather text friends with that credit). They realise that no one is viewing their profile, so their tweets are pointless."

Today's teens may have something to say, but no-one else, not even their friends, wants to hear it. In this respect, they differ little from most adults.

Pointless, indeed. ®

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