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L,.G

读书|新知|生活禅

Blog or Blue?

A Post#

Today I saw a post from a netizen on Twitter:

tweets via @BaibanbaoNet
(tweets via @BaibanbaoNet)

What he said makes sense. Whether it's writing a blog or writing tweets, it's a way of outputting and expressing oneself. There is not much difference between the two in terms of form.

In fact, many netizens, including some well-known KOLs from European and American countries, use Twitter as a blog and supplement it with a newsletter for more systematic output.

Some bloggers may say that after seeing the amazing things Ma Yilong has done since taking over Twitter, writing a blog, especially an independent blog, allows you to have control over your own data.

pic via https://twitter.com/lelefarley/satus/1663965782513192961?s=20

(pic via https://twitter.com/lelefarley/satus/1663965782513192961?s=20)

This sounds reasonable, but it doesn't hold up to scrutiny. Backing up Twitter data is not difficult, and when posting long articles on Twitter, most people use Typefully or write them locally and then copy and paste them into the Twitter input box. Few people write long articles directly in the input box.

The argument of whether it's better to write tweets or blogs is meaningless. Each has its own needs, which determines the choices people make.

Comparison#

I asked ChatGPT to make a simple comparison between the two:

Twitter BlueSelf-hosted Blog
Content PublishingCan directly publish long articles on TwitterPublish content on your own blog platform
Content Length LimitAlthough Twitter has introduced long articles, there is still a limit of 4000 charactersGenerally no length limit, can write very long articles
User AccessUsers need a Twitter account to access fullyAnyone can access without an account
Data ControlData is controlled by Twitter, users have some data rights but are limited by Twitter's policiesData is completely controlled by the user
Design CustomizationTwitter Blue has a relatively fixed design, limited customization spaceUsers can fully customize the design and layout of the blog
Social FeaturesTwitter has powerful social features, easy to promote and shareUnless integrated with other social plugins, social features are relatively weak
CostRequires subscription feeDepends on the platform and services used
MaintenanceNo maintenance requiredRegular updates and maintenance are required, especially security updates
Search Engine OptimizationMay be limited by Twitter's SEO strategyCan fully control SEO and improve search engine rankings

My Thoughts#

The last sentence in the tweet from BaibanbaoNet says, "No one reads it on Twitter, and no one reads it on the blog." I strongly disagree with this.

Writing a blog is always a self-pleasing activity, not something done to please others. It is a natural behavior that occurs during the process of continuous learning and thinking. This behavior itself is not fundamentally different from taking notes. The only difference is that notes are not usually made public, while blogs are. The reason for making blogs public is that the essence of the Internet's spirit is openness and sharing. A pure blogger does not need to spend too much effort on increasing page views; everything will naturally fall into place. Just like Program-Thinking, just like CoolShell by Haozi, just like the independent blogs on Firewood News, they don't need to worry about it, they are just there.

As for whether to write blogs or tweets, I have thought about it in my diary a few months ago.

For me, the biggest advantage of a blog is not the data, but the fact that it is my own space. I can write whatever I want (for a blog hosted on a server outside of China and not filed), without being influenced by others or creating a persona for myself. More importantly, it does not consume too much of my time and energy.

Writing tweets, on the other hand, is different. It requires more time and energy than writing a blog. Not only do you have to be more careful with your wording, but you also have to pay attention to feedback in real-time. People have a natural desire to be noticed and followed, and the social nature of Twitter makes it likely that it will end up being a platform where you create and express yourself under a certain persona, or try to please your followers. These are not things I enjoy.

Also, when writing a blog, I have multiple ways to format and cite, especially when it comes to mixing text and images or having a lot of references. Twitter does not have this functionality; it is more suitable as a distribution channel rather than a good output channel.

So why separate the two? This is why famous KOLs in European and American countries use Twitter as a blog and also operate a newsletter. They fully utilize the social nature of Twitter to quickly spread information and viewpoints, interact with readers, and collect feedback. Then, after further thinking and incorporating feedback, they publish it in the form of a newsletter.

Final Words#

There is no absolute answer to the advantages, disadvantages, and choices between blogs and Twitter. Each method has its unique value and significance, providing us with different perspectives and experiences. Whether it's a blog or Twitter, whether it's text or audio, whether it's one-way output or interactive, they are just tools and channels for us to express ourselves and share knowledge.

What is more important is whether we can truly understand and appreciate the possibilities that these tools bring, whether we can find the right way for ourselves, and whether we can continue to learn and grow in this process.

When we are willing to share, willing to communicate, and willing to listen, we have already transcended the limitations of the tools and become creators and disseminators of knowledge.

This, perhaps, is the most important thing.

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