Warblog - Current Relevance

Current Relevance

"MilBlogs" developed a relevance by providing citizens what the main stream media was not; true stories of what was actually occurring on the battlefield. Many milbloggers found it difficult to translate those wartime stories into their non-combat voice, but as one milblog fell silent, ten more popped up. Of the ten soldiers that returned, one would find relevance in home country reporting. Many of those that maintained their sites upon return, turned to the politics of National Defense and Veterans Affairs. Others directly addressed cases of "Stolen Valor" and the anti-war movement.

Citizen authored milblogs often did not have this issue, where the focus was solely on the reporting of a particular aspect of the military, such as the Navy.

MilBlogs appear to have established their relevance and the future of milblogs may only be threatened by a diminished role of the military itself.

Some believe the term "warblog" has become something of an anachronism—a reflection of the speed with which things change in the world of the Internet. Most blogs that gained popularity as "warblogs" have far expanded their focus to politics and general news. Many warblogs became a focus of attention for frequently updated information related to the election during the 2004 campaign. Others, however, note that the warblogs' level of focus on the war remains a distinguishing feature, and separates them from blogs whose political coverage is mostly domestic in nature.

The field has also birthed a related subsidiary class of webblogs known as "MilBlogs," which also tend to focus on the war. These blogs are written by serving or retired military personnel, or have members on their team blog that fit this description.

Blogging has also extended to people living in current or potential combat zones, with the growth of blogs by Iraqis, Afghans, and especially Iranian blogs in English. While these are not warblogs, there have been longstanding ties, including encouragement and material support of these activities by warbloggers; and warblog readers have often contributed a significant proportion of their English language audiences.

The U.S. Department of Defense has taken notice of the growing trend of 'warblogging' and has begun to monitor warblogs. They have established a team consisting of ten Virginia National Guard personnel to routinely monitor the online activities of U.S. Service men & women, including warblogs and the posting of war videos and photos. Some warbloggers have pre-emptively taken their blogs down out of a fear of potential reprisals from their Chain of Command.

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