Jorn Barger first coined the term “web log” in 1997. Though what is commonly known as blogging began as early as 1996 with Dave Winer’s web site intended for use in the 24 Hours of Democracy project.

The shortened term “blog” was used by Peter Merholz in early 1999 when he announced he would pronounce it “we blog.”

Blogging began gaining mainstream attention in 2001 with political blogs such as Jerome Armstrong’s MyDD and Andrew Sullivan’s AndrewSullivan.com gaining a large following of Internet users. The tragic events of September 11th, 2001 encouraged the creation of numerous “warblogs,” which dealt with America’s reaction to terrorism around the world.

Bloggers have gradually gained more power to bring events to the attention of the traditional media, such as controversial comments made by Trent Lott at a birthday party for Strom Thurmond.

Recently, bloggers discredited a news story on 60 Minutes that used forged documents to attempt to damage President Bush’s military service record.