This is a nice piece in ChronicleVitae by Terry McGlynn: “Why Blogging Is Still Good for Your Career”.
Regardless, in every field, scholars run academic blogs that reflect the professional discourse, and sometimes those blogs will drive the broader conversation. Even if you don’t read academic blogs, they may be driving the conversation in your discipline. It typically takes several months for traditional peer-reviewed journals to publish research and then publish rebuttals and responses. In blogs, the same kind of academic conversation can take place over the course of days, or even hours.
I find that the blogging environment has changed enormously since Facebook became ubiquitous. People are discussing blogs and blog posts in their own networks with other professionals. Those conversations often happen in places separate from the blog posts themselves, and not followed by the blog author.
I think that’s generally healthy, because it enables people to talk (really, write) through issues with people they know and trust.
But these decentralized conversations within the discipline have a big downside. What seems like “common knowledge” actually may only be shared among a small group of people, and they reinforce each other’s voices like an echo chamber.
I’ve spent less time blogging during the last couple of years, because my fieldwork and research commitments have taken a lot of my energy. But I can say that blog posts—whether here or at Medium—are having a greater readership and impact than ever before.