Matt and Vincent both have posts about President Mbeki’s acknowledgement of the blogosphere and the role bloggers play in South Africa today. This is a tremendous boost for bloggers in South Africa and while there is still much debate about the value of much of the content being published on blogs today, it is a mistake to underestimate the value of blogs and blogging. I was chatting to a colleague this morning at the First Tuesday event in Johannesburg and I was telling her about my theory (I am sure someone else came up with it before me though) that social media isn’t a phase which will fade with 1990s style banner advertising. Social media is being entrenched as a permanent layer of the Web and will remain a part of our Web for the forseeable future. The technologies may be new but social media is an expression of an ancient human need to connect and share. Blogging is a part of that process and ignoring it is about as productive as ignoring our humanity.