josh (joshc) wrote,


There was an absolutely worthless article in the New York Times today about weblogs. In case you missed it, here's the late breaking news: people write things about their life and post it on the web!

The thing about these articles is that most fail to say anything new or provide any sort of context or relevance. And in being annoyed, I wondered when online diaries were first covered (which returned me to my seemingly hopeless quest to remember the name of that guy who started a weblog in the early nineties, was a yahoo! cool link, media attention, etc.).

As far as I can tell1, the first coverage of online diaries was a half-page "Read My Diary" in the June 3 1998 Village Voice [pdf]. Finding this article solved my other mystery of the possible "first weblogger," Justin Hall, who started keeping a public journal in 1994 at

It strikes me that this brief foray into weblog scholarship/history is probably naive and missing something obvious.2 But I'm just happy to have found that site.

[1] based on a proQuest citation & abstract search of (web) and (diary) and (date < 1998)

[2] In fact, Hall is mentioned in several other publications (cataloged on his site) years before this, but I'll leave the pdf link up just because it's interesting to see how little the coverage of personal weblogs has changed in the past seven years.

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