I can’t seem to get my wife to get blogging. Or get any enthusiasm together for it, anyway. Maybe I’m just not articulating it well enough.

There are two problems with web sites. One is appearance and the other is content. Your website can look great, but be years out of date. Your website can be up to date all the time, but look terrible. Some poor saps have both problems–old sites that look awful.

Enter blogs. Weblogs are a technology that makes it easy for you to update your website as often as you’d like. You could make weblog posts constantly, and some people do. Moreover, most blogging tools come with decent looking templates that make your weblog look decent enough to read easily. Better yet, most weblog tools are inexpensive, or even free (see Blogger).

Now for the meat of the matter. Most people use weblogs as journals and diaries, but move on to commentary on issues, or even outright journalistic reporting. Blogs can be good, blogs can be bad, but blogs are often at least as authentic as professional publications like the New York Times or the Wall Street Journal. Think about it. Major publications are actually in competition with–and potentially in danger from–single-person publishing weblogs.

I’ve been on the scene several times during news events. In none of these situations–not one–has the media reported things accurately. During September 11th, however, I got more accurate and timely information from Internet weblogs than from the networks. Trent Lott’s downfall in part resulted from his story rolling around on weblogs for two and a half weeks before the major news media finally caught on to the wave and publicized it. Just as the RIAA is petrified that the Internet has removed the middle man in the music business, companies like AOL are slowly realizing that the middle man has been removed from the publishing industry.

Weblogs aren’t yet a threat to mainstream media, and it remains to be seen how the new age of publishing will shake out. The fact is clear, however, that weblogs deserve a good look, and some serious consideration. If you’d like to get started, weblogs of all sizes and shapes (and quality–let’s be frank) can be found in several places. Try Daypop or Weblogs.com (click on the little globe icons to visit weblog.com sites) to see some cool, popular sites to try.