note: This is a continuation in the series of the MotherPie Blog Study, following the Introduction.
Intensively Engaged in the Blogosphere...
Active Bloggers in the Prime Child-Raising Years
Most of the respondents to the blog study were experienced bloggers with 88% of the respondents having one or more blogs. On the issue of earning an income: 168 respondents chose not to answer this question. Of those that did, 69% of the respondents work for income full-time or part-time and 31% are not working for income. The vast majority, 77.1%, participate more than one hour/day blogging or reading blogs and 69% reported that they anticipated spending the same or more time rather than less in the blogosphere next year. Most consider their tech skills to be high or average. Of this survey’s respondents, 56% have one blog and 32% have more than one blog. Only 12% of the responders did not have a blog and nearly 70% of all respondents were not planning to start another blog in the future.
Of the respondents, 43% were between 30 and 40, which is the time when the average American mother is raising babies and young children while 22% were between 21 - 29 and 22% were inthe 40 - 50 category. 11% were over age 50 and 2% were under 21.
Online News Consumption and Blogging Trends
In my previous media studies on online news, I have detected that bloggers were high consumers of online news, which is in line with overall studies of bloggers and news consumption patterns. This study lightly touched on news consumption in order to see if the mom bloggers differed from overall online news consumers. Additionally, the measurement of time spent online can indicate the online literacy/tech abilities of this audience and genre.
This survey found that respondents spent a large amount of time each day in the blogosphere and expect to spend about the same amount of time next year. Only a very small minority consider themselves to be passive rather than active participants in the blogosphere. Of major significance was the finding that of this study's respondents, 68% say they spend the most amount of time online reading, writing or commenting on blogs while only 16% spend the most amount of time online reading news. This is in contrast to overall online news consumption trends and studies on time spent blogging.
The latest Pew Research study on blogging, in July 2006 (focusing on bloggers in general, not by sex), found that the majority of bloggers, 59%, only spend one or two hours a week blogging. Comparatively, of note in analyzing the significance of blogging for moms is that 77% of this survey's respondents spend 14 hours or more each week on their own blog/s or reading blogs. Although these surveys can not be compared methodologically or statistically with relevance, a general assumption could be that mom bloggers may be spending perhaps at minimum up to seven times the amount of time in the blog community than the blogging population at large and this might be an area worthy of more in-depth study.
In September 2005 only 6% of women could say they read a blog the prior day (up from 2% in in February 2004) and by January of 2006, 35% of women had read someone’s blog, according to a Pew study (pdf). In early 2006, the average age of mom blog readers was 29 and 7% of internet users read a blog in April of that year, according to Pew internet trends.