Recently Tyler Cowen at Marginal Revolution posted asking this question, and getting few answers. He posed it in terms of some people arguing that it has gotten boring and unexciting, but the real issue may be has it been superseded by Facebook and Twitter as the cutting edge source of news and discussion, just as blogging displaced the revered internet lists some years ago in this way, although some such as our own Michael Perelman's revered pen-l continue to truck along. A weird straw in the wind may be that reportedly media mavens are now not going to the Drudge Report (a good move in my view) and are looking at Facebook and Twitter instead, with the recent role of Twitter in reporting the events in Iran being a real straw in the wind. If so, this would seem to be part of a larger trend, the bottom end of which is the decline of the print newspapers, which some such as Brad Delong trumpet as a good thing.
I think blogging will continue as a source of important discussion, at least in economics, even if it loses some of its cutting edge quality as a source of new information. However, I would emphasize that a loss of the bottom end, the print newspapers, would be disastrous in all this. Why? I cite my own experience back on maxspeak in the case of reporting about the problems of Kurdish people in Harrisonburg, VA, who were being mistreated by the FBI and the courts. The maxspeak files unfortunately remain inaccessible, but I posted here an update on that about two years ago.
A crucial aspect of the original blog about this matter on maxspeak, which got picked up by lots of other blogs and went around the globe before even the mayor of Harrisonburg knew what was going on, was that there was a lot of blowback from other blogs (especially the widely read Volokh Conspiracy) to the effect of "How do we know you did not make this up, where is the link to a newspaper story?" In the end, we were able to find an obscure story buried deep in a an earlier edition of the local paper, the Harrisonburg Daily News-Record, which reported on the ongoing prosecution of the Kurds, but which was buried so deep and was so favorable to the prosecution side that no civil libertarians or pretty much anybody outside of the local Kurdish community and a few supporters among the local Mennonite population even noticed it. But in the end, that ability to link to some sort of hard copy source in a print newspaper was crucial for support, and this blog report did have really positive consequences. Maybe twittering will be able to get around this, but twittering and Facebook can be manipulated, and fraudulent reports can be manufactured. Ground verification will still be needed for breaking news.