You can find comparisons from 2005 at Blog Demographics and Why We Blog.

12. How long have you had your primary blog?
Response
Percent
Response
Count
 Less than 4 months  16.6%   131 
 4-8 months  14.2%   112 
 9 months – 1 year  15.3%   121 
 13 months to 2 years  23.4%   185 
 25 months to 3 years  14.8%   117 
 37 months to 4 years  7.1%   56 
 49 months to 5 years  3.7%   29 
 61 months to 6 years  2.8%   22 
 73 months to 7 years  1.1%   9 
 More than 7 years  1.1%   9 
answered question   791 
skipped question   48

Wow! Nearly half (46%) of people’s primary blogs have been started in the last year and 70% have been started in the past two years! So only 30% of us have had our blogs for more than two years! The past two years have certainly been the explosive years in terms of blog growth in our field. I think this has to do with the fact that blogging has become so much more mainstream — even companies like GM and Southwest Airlines have blogs!

13. What software/service do you currently use to publish your primary blog?
Response
Percent
Response
Count
 Wordpress  33.3%   262 
 Moveable Type  3.3%   26 
 Blogger  46.2%   364 
 Typepad  2.8%   22 
 LiveJournal  4.1%   32 
 MySpace  1.7%   13 
 Ning  0.1%   1 
 Self-designed/custom  1.3%   10 
view comment Other (please specify)
 7.4%   58 
answered question   788 
skipped question   51 

WordPress has definitely made a better showing here (from 20.7% in 2005), and Moveable Type seems to have lost a whole lot of its marketshare (down from 11.6% in 2005), at least in our corner of the blogosphere. Blogger is still as big as it ever was, though, as you will see when I cover filters, it’s more popular with certain populations than others. Of those who answered "Other" Drupal and B2Evolution made the best showing, though each had less than a 1% share of the library blogosphere. At least with Drupal, I expect their percentage to grow by the next survey.

14. Do you blog anonymously?
Response
Percent
Response
Count
 Yes  23.5%   186 
 No  76.5%   604 
answered question   790 
skipped question  49 

I was surprised to find that such a large portion of the library blogosphere blogs anonymously (yes, I know I should have made blogging under a pseudonym an option and I definitely will next time). Certainly among the blogs I read, there are only a few who blog anonymously (or pseudonymously), though I’ve seen other sub-groups in the library blogosphere where the practice is more common. When I filtered some of the results, I found that women are far more likely to be anonymous bloggers as are public librarians. Not too surprisingly, taken as a whole, anonymous bloggers are less happy with their jobs. I wonder about the reasons for anonymous blogging; I’m sure the reasons are as diverse as those who blog anonymously. That would definitely be an interesting survey.

15. If your primary blog is not sponsored by your place of employment, do people at work know about your blog?
Response
Percent
Response
Count
 Yes  64.9%   454 
 No  17.3%   121 
 Not sure  17.9%   125 
answered question   700 
skipped question  139 

I have heard from a lot of people who tell me that they write what they do because "no one at work knows I blog." Well, we may think that’s the case, but sometimes we can be dead wrong. I’ve had colleagues and students comment on my blog and I had no idea they ever looked at it. So it’s interesting to find that 35% of people either think that no one at work knows about their blog or are not sure. If 23% of bloggers blog anonymously, there are still 12% of bloggers who are blogging under their name and either are not sure or think their colleagues don’t know about their blog. I just hope that 12% is a bit judicious about what they’re posting, because the assumption that "no one at work knows I blog" is not a safe one to make.

16. Was this your first blog?
Response
Percent
Response
Count
 Yes  62.0%   490 
 No  38.1%   301 
answered question   791 
skipped question  48 

So almost 40% of library bloggers have had other blogs prior to the one they primarily use now. I wonder if those blogs were for an assignment, a Learning 2.0 class or were just ones they tried to make a go of before that they found they couldn’t (or didn’t want to) maintain. I also wonder how many of the people responding to the 2007 survey will still have their blogs one year, two years, or three years from now.

17. When did you first start blogging?
Response
Percent
Response
Count
 1997 or earlier  1.6%   13 
 1998  0.6%   5 
 1999  1.9%   15 
 2000  3.4%   27 
 2001  6.3%   50 
 2002  6.2%   49 
 2003  9.4%   74 
 2004  12.4%   98 
 2005  18.6%   147 
 2006  22.5%   178 
 2007  17.1%   135 
answered question   791 
skipped question   48 

2005 seems to have been the magical year when blogging really took off. The number of people who started blogging has continued to grow each year, showing that blogging is still a growing trend in our field. Judging by the numbers who started blogging by August of 2007, it looks like 2007 might even surpass 2006!

18. Do you contribute to more than one blog?
Response
Percent
Response
Count
 Yes  66.9%   529 
 No  33.1%   262 
answered question   791 
skipped question  48

Gosh, it’s hard enough to keep up with one blog, so it’s amazing to me that 66.9% contribute to more than one. Let’s hope at least one of those is collaborative so they aren’t 100% responsible!

19. What type of blog(s) do you have? Please choose a single answer for each individual blog you have.
Response
Percent
Response
Count
 Personal blog (1 author)  64.0%   506 
 Collaborative personal blog (more than 1 author)  11.6%   92 
 Professional blog (1 author)  38.7%   306 
 Collaborative professional blog (more than 1 author)  24.0%   190 
 Internal staff blog  14.0%   111 
 Official library blog for patrons  23.0%   182 
 Official library blog for librarians (ALA TechSource Blog, PLA Blog, LITA Blog, etc.)  4.8%   38 
view comment Other (please specify)
 6.7%   53 
answered question   791 
skipped question   48 


This is an interesting question and a very subjective one. While I consider my blog professional, even though I write from a personal point of view, I have a friend who writes a very similar blog who considers hers personal. What is most interesting is to compare the answers in 2005 to those today. The statistic that has really risen here is the "official library blog for patrons." Back in 2005, that made up 18.3% of the surveyed population. Now, 23% of respondents state that they contribute to an official blog for library patrons. Collaborative professional blogs are also up, from 20.7% to 24%. Individual professional blogs and collaborative personal blogs are both down. A number of people in the "other" comments state that they write blogs that are both personal and professional, and that’s how many blogs are. The point is, do you feel that this represents you professionally? Would you put it on your resume? If so, it’s professional. If not, it’s personal. That’s my take, but I’m sure everyone has a different one, and that’s what I find interesting. What do you consider the dividing line between a personal and a professional blog?

20. Please choose the top three reasons why you blog.
Response
Percent
Response
Count
 To share ideas with others/keep colleagues informed/keep family or friends informed  70.7%   559 
 To record ideas for myself / to keep current  39.6%   313 
 To network / to become part of a community  38.1%   301 
 To reach out to patrons or clients  23.0%   182 
 For self-promotion / career advancement / make a name for myself  12.7%   100 
 To write / to develop my writing skills  22.3%   176 
 To process ideas / to clarify my thinking on certain issues  27.3%   216 
 To contribute to the profession  23.2%   183 
 No one else was writing about my specific topic / to represent the underrepresented  7.1%   56 
 To vent my frustrations  7.1%   56 
Promote library collections/services  0.5%  4
view comment Other (please specify)
 5.7%   45 
answered question   790 
skipped question   49 

Last year, I had asked “Why do you blog?” as an open question. This year, I decided to take the most popular responses from the last survey and use them as the options this year. The other change was that I allowed people to choose their top three reasons for blogging, because I know personally that I don’t just have a single reason for why I keep doing it. The top three reasons haven’t changed since 2005. I think it’s wonderful that over 38% of respondents mark being part of a community of bloggers as a reason for blogging. I feel so privileged to be part of this amazing and supportive community that spurs me on and inspires me constantly. I don’t know where I’d be without it. Processing ideas came in at number 4, which was a big leap. I find that I usually start writing blog posts not 100% clear about my feeling on an issue, but as I write, I really am forced to confront my thoughts and feelings swirling around on the issue and it helps me to clarify what I believe. Perhaps it’s a bit like therapy. :)

I’m glad to see that the idea of blogging for self-promotion has gone up, but not as much as I would have thought (from 4.3% to 12.7% — certainly a great jump though). Blogging can be such a great tool for marketing yourself when done judiciously. I would never have written a book had I not been writing my blog. It’s certainly true that you can just as easily create an online persona that is detrimental to your career.

Venting one’s frustrations is still towards the bottom of the list of reasons for blogging, but when you filter for those who blog anonymously, it goes up significantly. Not exactly surprising, but it does explain the reason why some people blog anonymously..

21. Do you receive any revenue from blogging?
Response
Percent
Response
Count
 Yes, I get paid specifically to blog.  1.5%   12 
 Yes, I receive ad revenue.  2.4%   19 
 Yes, I earn revenue from licensing my blog content.  0.3%   2 
 I earn revenue from more than one of these means.  0.1%   1 
 No  93.6%   736 
view comment Other (please specify)
 2.0%   16 
answered question   786 
skipped question   53 

While blogging for pay is not a big part of what goes on in the blogosphere, I’d say it is definitely growing. While I haven’t benefitted financially from blogging, I certainly have as a result of having my blog. But that, obviously, is more difficult to quantify.

22. In addition to publishing content on your blog, do you publish in the professional literature? (Choose all that apply)
Response
Percent
Response
Count
 I have published in a local or state publication (not peer-reviewed)  24.4%   192 
 I have published in a small-readership publication with national or international readership (not peer-reviewed)  22.5%   177 
 I have published in a major national or international publication (not peer-reviewed)  17.7%   139 
 I have published in a peer-reviewed journal  19.9%   156 
 I have contributed a chapter to a published book  15.8%   124 
 I have written a published book (alone or with 1-2 other authors)  5.5%   43 
 No  45.9%   361 
view comment Other (please specify)
 8.0%   63 
answered question   786 
skipped question   53 

I think it’s wonderful that so many bloggers are publishing professionally! I think blogging is great practice for publishing and when I first started my blog, I didn’t think anyone was going to read it, but I thought it would be good writing practice for when I hopefully published in the future. I can tell you that it definitely was.

When filtering by type of library, the stats for publishing definitely go up for those in academic, medical and corporate libraries. Male bloggers are also more likely to publish than women (what’s up with that?). Anonymous bloggers are less likely to have published and those who publish are more likely to consider their blogs professional.

The "other" category is filled with people who published in conference proceedings and people who have as yet unpublished materials that they are writing or are going through the editing process. All in all, a really good-sized group!

Of course, what I’d really like to know is what percentage of the general population of librarians publishes. I’m pretty sure it’s significantly lower. Does anyone have numbers on that?