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Many users are experts in areas which they don't need to ask questions on, yet there knowledge is only spread in the stackexchange world through the answering of questions.

It would be fantastic if users had the option of blogging about certain areas, integrated into their user profiles, which are also searchable, allowing them to blog about their areas of expertise, and still be integrated into stackexchange.

This could even be a status symbol if you only allow users with a certain reputation in an area, to blog on that topic.

EDIT following replies:

  1. I believe not all blog posts can be covered by raising a question and then answering it, some topics do not lend themselves to that paradigm.
  2. Linking to a blog is not the same as having it's content in the stackexchange network. The content is not searchable in stack, is not associated with tags, voted on, or commented on in the same way.
  3. A blog post does fit into a Q&A paradigm, in that it is a sharing of knowledge, however typically on a more complicated scenario, like how to configure something, how to best approach a particular problem, etc.
  4. This functionality doesn't have to be used by everyone, but would add to the scope of the stackexchange set of websites, and would have a beneficial impact on their use on the internet.

So I still see this as being worthwhile, and in the stackexchange set of sites interests to introduce.

Edit 2:
This would also help to ensure, that blog posts which are linked from stack answers, will be available instead of vanishing at some point in the future.
(Some answers need comprehensive replies, which need detail which it's better to link to someone's blog post, then to copy and past the content from it.)

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I've wanted this frequently - after I learn something new that I could express in a 3-paragraph explanation with a code snippet. –  Riley Mar 5 '11 at 14:34
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If you want to share a piece of knowledge that hasn't been covered before, post a question and answer it yourself. –  Gelatin Mar 5 '11 at 19:31
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I for one like this suggestion. Let people who want to blog create their own content. It only benefits the stack exchange network with more content. Either that or people can down vote this more. –  theJerm Mar 5 '11 at 21:09
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You could always link to a blog that uses the same license as Stack Overflow. –  Tim Post Mar 6 '11 at 3:36

5 Answers 5

I really like the idea of users writing about their favourite topics, but I think this specific way of going about it is beyond the scope of a Q&A site.

It would also mean reinventing the wheel.

Alternate solution: All users have the ability to put links in their "About Me" section, and the Website field as well**. If the user is a subject area expert and has a blog, I would imagine that they've already put a link to their blog in one or both of these areas.

** The links are nofollowed until the user reaches 2k rep.

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4  
They also have a website link in the left hand side of their profile in for too. –  Adam Davis Mar 5 '11 at 14:43

Some of us are shy, like The Woz, and can only answer question when we are asked. Blogs are for people like the other Steve.

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As others have said, blogging is beyond the scope of a Q&A site.

What I would find interesting, though, is the ability to hook up the profile to an arbitrary RSS stream - be it Twitter, the user's own blog, an ohloh feed or whatever. But that is arguably already possible by linking to it in the description field.

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Based on a discussion whether or not you are allowed to link to your blog, I was going to write a similar suggestion. Sadly, I'm not too surprised about the many downvotes this suggestion got, as people tend to resist major changes and have difficulties thinking 'outside of the box', or in this case, the existing system. Keep an open mind when reading this, and the OP's suggestion.

Personally, I prefer writing on my blog because it gives me a form of satisfaction and control I don't get from posting a question and answering it myself. I tend to take more care of my blog posts than my answers on Stack Exchange due to the difference in the nature of the two. A blog post is usually really in depth while an answer promotes using the 'fastest gun in the west' approach. Although a quick answer is a good answer, a thorough answer can be useful as well. If there where to be a way to combine the best of two worlds - which I believe shouldn't be that difficult conceptually - it would have advantages, of which many are mentioned by Bravax.

A blogging environment in Stack Exchange could ideally offer all the flexibility and attractiveness which a normal blogging environment offers, but could additionally be tightly integrated in the Q&A where relevant.

  • The more links are 'inhouse' the less risk of link rot.
  • The blogging environment wouldn't interrupt the Q&A site, but could solely act as meta-data for in depth information. In depth explanations could actually be promoted by integrating the voting system on those links.
  • You promote experts in areas to share their entire knowledge instead of just the small relevant bit of information applied to a very specific question.
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There are certainly blogs put on by many of the sites in the StackExchange network. You can find them at:

http://stackexchange.com/blogs

I'm a moderator on Database Administrators and our blog can be found at dba.blogoverflow.com - yours truly even wrote a post there last summer.

To be honest, though, I think many of the top contributors here don't also have time to blog, or they blog for work, or they blog for profit, what have you. This site is meant to be a Q & A site, not a collection of blogs - in our case we started up the blog to be a helpful side attraction in order to guide folks on asking questions and to serve as a sort of FAQ or starting point for topics that are too broad or generic to be formal questions on the site. I don't think any of the sites' blogs are meant to be public free-for-alls where anyone can blog what they want, and I don't think that would serve the network's purpose very well at all.

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