Lifestreaming, Blogging and Microblogging – how they fit together

social network map

from last year’s 06/02/08 slideshow: Explaining Twitter, Friendfeed & Social Media 2.0. I just added Lifestreaming.

With the advent of Twitter and the real time web, can blogs can chronicle real time as effectively as micro-blogging tools? Last week Steve Rubel introduced his move from blogging to lifestreaming with a new lifestream site based on the Posterous platform.

steve rubel

For the uninitiated, the lifestream looks curiously like a blog:

Q) Cmon Steve, isn’t this “lifestream” just basically a blog?

Sort of. The site is certainly structured like a blog. However, the approach is different. It’s less formal. There will be more bits, fewer posts. What’s more, I will employ creative ways to share and engage – such as mindmaps, image galleries and short videos. In addition, this will serve as a key way I connect to you on various social networks.

The principal difference between a blog and a lifestream: to comment on a blog, a reader needs to be on the blog itself.  Commenting on a lifestream can be done from any social network where the lifestream content is distributed – Facebook, Friendfeed, Twitter, etc.

However, there is a real reason why individuals or companies need blogs or a central repository of content like a lifestream to give them online presence. Twitter and other micro-blogging services suffer from massive data overload (literally multimillions tweets per hour), and Twitter search can only query across a few weeks of Twitter data at most. Robert Scoble points out:

Here’s an easy search: find the original Tweet of the guy who took the picture of the plane that fell into the Hudson. I can do it on FriendFeed after a few tries, but on Twitter Search? Give me a break. Over on Google? One click, but you gotta click through a blog or a journalistic report to get there. Real time search is horrid at saving our knowledge and making it accessible. (italics mine)

Conclusion: it’s essential to have the central repository of content that micro-blogging tools can drive traffic towards.

About Pat Kitano

Patrick Kitano works with brands in developing hyperlocal engagement solutions and is administrator of the Breaking News Network, a national hyperlocal network devoted to community service. He is the author of The Local Network on Street Fight, and is reachable via Twitter @pkitano and email

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