All Kinds of Bloggers!
If blogs are hard to pin down, so are bloggers. A common caricature beloved by editorialists is the pajama-clad navel-gazer who deems the minutiae of his or her life worthy of a world-wide audience -- and there are such bloggers. (Some of them are quite entertaining, too.) But there are other caricatures: the snarky soapbox blogger trying to parlay attitude into life as an author or talking head (and earn some money via text ads), or the political ranter digging up obscure dirt. When even the caricatures don't mesh, that's a warning sign about generalizations. The Chicago Tribune might have done well to check in with its very own stable of bloggers -- one of whom, Eric Zorn, swiftly dismantled his own colleagues' editorial the next day. Bloggers within the big-media tent should count as a breed in their own right, as should bloggers who strive to become the authoritative source on Niche X, corporate blogs with a rotating cast of authors, and all the other flavors of blogs and bloggers developing out there by fits and starts. That's a lot of camps, all with different goals, styles and strategies.