It was one year ago today that a law student's (potentially misguided and catastrophic) idea to start a blog rather than work on a journal came to its fruition. What can I say...we march to a slightly different drummer here at Blawgconomics. Like so many things in life, it alternately seems both fresh in the mind and a distant memory. Luckily, there have been many people along the way who have contributed toward ensuring that it was/has been an ultimately good decision.
I was going to do a posting detailing some of the highlights of the past year. There have been outstanding contributions on legal regimes in Africa, unstoppable viruses, and electric car batteries. There have been posts which were picked up by major blogs like The Huffington Post. The S-REIT series has received traffic from every continent except Antarctica, highlighting the interest people around the world have in technology, development and green solutions.
However, I am instead going to take a few minutes to expand upon a theme that we have explored a bit in the past; the extent to which technological advances, such as blogging, have contributed toward making the world a much smaller place. While it is true that civilizations have expanded and shared ideas for millenia, and while over the last century advances such as air travel and phones have contributed toward this same end, nothing has changed the world quite the way the internet has. While there are likely myriad statistics and studies on such things, it has taken personal experience with the phenomenon for it to really hit close to home for me.
It was incredible to see traffic from Iceland when I posted about the debt repayment crisis, or England when I discussed pub laws. It was interesting to see how a translation of a post by German friends drove traffic from their homeland. Africans checking in to read about SADC issues was mindblowing. And, it has been nothing short of inspiring to receive visits and feedback from our friends over in China, where there are still controls over the tools of knowledge and where, despite double digit growth rates and a middle class which is growing exponentially, you can still be jailed for expressing some of the opinions I am blessed to be able to express.
I am not sure if the site will last until its next birthday. Life gets in the way, inspiration drifts away, employers get uptight about employee's opinions leaving the safety of their own minds to reside in the public domain (though this is less a problem for the 'job deficient'). However, no matter what happens in the future, the past year has given me a life-long lesson in how touching, how personally rewarding it can be, to reach people. It might be anonymously from across the globe, or it might be a good friend just across the classroom. In the end, it is entirely inconsequential; reaching people is a reward, and the only one I will ever seek for the time I have put into this site. It is merely one of the upsides of the age we live it that doing so is so possible.