Blogosphere Growth Slowing

Social media site Technorati used to publish “State of the Blogosphere” reports, looking at blogging numbers, practices, and trends. Now Technorati has renamed the reports “State of the Live Web” to better address popular social networking and interactive media types found on the Web&mdahs;and the move may have come just in time as the growth of blogging is showing strong signs of leveling off.

According to Technorati’s Dave Sifry, new blogs keep popping up all the time—with as many as 120,000 new blogs launching on the Internet every day. Technorati’s blog world now encompasses more than 70 million blogs, but Sifry notes it took 320 days for the total number of blogs to double from 35 million to 70 million. Technorati is also seeing a slowing in the rate at which new posts are created: while major world events spawn large numbers of blog posts, the overall trend in posting volume is growing more slowly than in previous reporting periods—although it is still growing. Right now, bloggers produce about 1.5 million postings per day; in October 2006, that was about 1.3 million posts a day.

Sifry points out that some of the decline in blog and posting growth can be attributed to Technorati’s efforts to eliminate spam blogs (splogs) from its numbers—and, of course, despite their strong presence Technorati doesn’t track everything which might be considered a blog. Nonetheless, the numbers may indicate the blogging world is beginning to reach a stable maturity, where, eventually, growth might cease altogether—and lets not forget analysis firm Gartner predicting blogging would peak during the first half of 2007 after blogs crossed the 100 million mark.

Sifry also notes that the number of blogs which rank in the top 100 Web sites has risen significantly: in the third quarter of 2006, only 12 blogs ranked in the top 100 most popular sites; in the fourth quarter of 2006 that number was 22. Also, Japanese-language blog postings once again outnumber those in English, with 37 percent of blog posts in the fourth quarter of 2006 being in Japanese, with 36 percent being in English. Farsi also appeared as the tenth most-common posting language, as Middle Eastern nations like Iran increasingly embrace blogging systems.


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