Being original is something I’ve been thinking a lot about lately.
In an audiobook I am currently listening to, Break From The Pack, the author Oren Harari uses the memorable term “copycat economy” to describe the current state of the economy. This is state in which anything new, clever and original will inevitably be copied by the competition. This can be seen everywhere on the internet. For example, a new feature added to an online shopping site will quickly be copied by the competition.
Recently I was doing some research on monetarising my blog when I came across an extreme example of this. At this particular site a bloke actually bragged about finding a little known e-books, ripping off their entire content and posting it on his blogs claiming it as his own. Pathetic. It made me realise that a lot of articles just repeat the same old points about the same old topics. They really are indistinguishable.
So how can we be original on the internet in what it such a copycat economy? Firstly I think its important to recognise the near impossiblity of having a truly original idea. For example, do you have a great idea for a blog? If so, I bet at least a hundred people have previously thought of it, and at least 5 have already created blogs regarding it. This isn’t meant to discourage you from trying to dream up a brilliant new idea for a blog, just realise that there is probably another one already out there covering the same topic.
So what do you do? To distinguish your blog from the competition you need to add interest and value to the information that currently exists in cyberspace. At this point you may be asking “what makes Peter think thechangeblog.com is so special?” Well I can’t guarantee that you’ll like the site, but I can promise that I will write about topics that I consider interesting and beneficial in a way that references my own life. And this is something I believe everyone can do. The whole Web 2.0 phenomenon is all about us.
So when it comes to original blogging I believe the key is your unique life story. Add interest and value to topics that have been covered to death elsewhere by letting people get to know you.