July 21, 2011

Why Blog? Let’s figure out what Blogs are

Writing about web page http://iprobe.gr/Surveys/BlogForever/

I have recently took part in one of the ‘Why Blog?’ workshop sessions, which happened to be very useful. I was interested to find out what other people think about blogs, what they are or may be. Having quite a diverse group of participants (I recall researchers, educationist, administrators and with various level of experience of blogging) wasprobably the reason behind the diversity of views.

Categorising Blogs

The results of group-work activities of around categorising and describing blogs varied from one group to another. No identical collage of scattered paper on the floor was produced during the workshop :)

One thing that most of us would probably agree is that the concept of a blog can be stretched, moulded and forged to meet individual needs and aspirations! The Blogosphere itself happens to be astonishingly diverse and dynamic. The idea that blogs mean different things to different people interlinks with the survey organised as part of the BlogForever project. We are inviting you to take part and fill it out here.

The survey aims to identify what people think blogs and value are to both blog authors and readers. The outcomes of the survey will be used to inform the development of solutions for preservation, management and dissemination of blogs. If you would like to be posted on the outcomes of the survey drop a message to blogforever_survey@blogforever.eu.

Survey - Value of Blogs

July 18, 2011

To blog, or not to blog? That is the question…

A number of things, the launch of Google+ among them, have recently prompted me to think about blogging and how, why and where I blog, and more fundamentally about what a blog really is. Before I get to that, a little bit of history...

I started blogging back in 2004, with a blog hosted on the University of Warwick's in-house Warwick Blogs system. That was really an experiment to see what blogging was all about, and specifically to see if it was a useful mechanism for enhancing communication within my team at work. Once that experiment was over, I carried on, encouraged by a community of people that were using Warwick Blogs and actively reading and commenting on each other's blogs. My blog turned into a place where I thought out loud about whatever interested me. There was no theme, and no intended audience. I wrote the blog for me. Eventually, I discovered Twitter as an outlet for my random thoughts and I stopped blogging quite so much, and eventually stopped completely. As an attempt to kick-start my blogging I created a new blog and while I don't blog quite so much there as I used to on the other blog, I do seem to be just about keeping it going. So far. Now, though, Google+ has arrived and I like it a lot. The ability to write long posts, unlike on Twitter, means that I could easily do all my "thinking out loud" there and not need to blog at all. Or maybe I mean I don't need a separate blog and that Google+ could be my blog? But what is a blog...

I use Google Analytics on my blogs, and despite there being no significant content on my old blog since 2009 it still gets over 700 visits a month. People clearly are finding the content there useful. Or more likely Google Search is sending them there because it thinks they'll find it useful. And for me, that is what makes a blog different from an update stream like Twitter or Google+ - permanence. Updates on social networking sites tend to be short lived. That is, people read them within a few hours of them being posted but after that they disappear into history and are never seen again. Even the search on Twitter doesn't return stuff more than a few days old anymore. One of the most viewed posts on my old blog is one I posted in 2006!

This has convinced me that a blog as a permanent, searchable entity separate from Twitter/Google+/etc. is a useful thing and I'll carry on doing it. I'm not sure that my new self-hosted Wordpress blog will stick around. If Google manage to nicely integrate Google+ with Blogger, for example, I could be very tempted to move there. But I will continue blogging somewhere...

And if the distinguishing factor of a blog is its permanence and searchability, we surely need to consider some form of archiving of blogs? This ties in very nicely with the Blog Forever Project mentioned by Karen Stepyan elsewhere on this blog.

July 15, 2011

Thoughts of a reluctant blogger

I have never really been interested in writing a blog, blogging, or the blogosphere before, so when I signed up to the pilot workshop last month I was very apprehensive - was I going to get anything out of it or was it going to be a waste of time?

It was certainly not a waste of time. Amy and Jess gave a fun-packed interactive session which helped me understand the blogosphere and knock down preconceptions I had of bloggers.

I thought the interactiveness of the workshop made the session highly engaging and interesting - I was dreading being talked at about blogging for a few hours, which I knew would go in one ear and out the other.

Instead I found the various exercises made the workshop a lot of fun, I felt I was part of the workshop and got out a lot more than I put in.

July 13, 2011

Mark – I need to learn about Twitter as well!

I need to learn about Twitter as well!

Karen Stepanyan – Let's preserve these!

Writing about web page http://blogforever.eu/

Karen says

Leon Hidderley – Unitemps blog starts here!

Writing about web page https://www.unitemps.co.uk

Leon says

Nathan Gamble – More types of blog than I thought

more types of blogs than i thought

Cath Fenn – Window into new bloggers starting out

Cath Fenn

Rachel – Define your purpose

Rachel - define your purpose

Joe Barr – Warwick Sport Needs to Start blogging

Writing about web page warwicksport.warwick.ac.uk

Warwick Sport needs to start blogging

May 2022

Mo Tu We Th Fr Sa Su
Apr |  Today  |
2 3 4 5 6 7 8
9 10 11 12 13 14 15
16 17 18 19 20 21 22
23 24 25 26 27 28 29
30 31               

Search this blog


Most recent comments

  • I have finally got round to starting my own blog. I have started off with a helpful guide to working… by Leon Hidderley on this entry
  • It is interesting what you say about being encouraged by the early community around Warwick blogs (a… by on this entry
  • A pleasure! I think, as we were saying during the workshop, one of the key things is to know what th… by on this entry
  • Thanks for this post Annette – it is really helpful to hear about your experiences. It is interestin… by on this entry

Blog archive

RSS2.0 Atom
Not signed in
Sign in

Powered by BlogBuilder