The word publish used to have a very narrow meaning. But today...
Everyone is publishing all the time. You publish pithy quotes to Twitter, updates to facebook, photos to Instagram and soapbox speeches to your blog.
Everyone is publishing all the time. So the question "Why do you publish?" is a very important one. As we talk with thought leaders, usually there are a few potential reasons why someone is driven to publish:
They want to be known and respected.
They have something to share with the world.
They want to connect with others and share experiences.
They seek to use content as a tool to build an enterprise.
Each of these motivations are different and come out clearly in what you publish. It only takes about 10 minutes reviewing a person's social media, blog and web site to get a clear idea of what drives their publishing. Try it, the exercise can be very enlightening and also very helpful as you consider your own answer to that question.
But why does it matter? Some might say, "As long as I'm publishing good stuff, who cares why!" But it does matter. In the end the "Why" impacts the "What."
So how would you answer that question?