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Do I need a blog?

Am I socially challenged if I don't have one?

     
9:51 pm on Apr 29, 2005 (gmt 0)

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I mean, I don't even have a homepage - a personal one. Neither do I own a callphone or a digital camera. So I am already helplessly outfashioned. Would running a blog make me the cool person I never was?

OK, jokes apart: I recently read an article that Germany is waaaaaaay behind in blogging, even if you only look at Europe. France and even the Netherlands are a good distance ahead of us. The reason given was that Germany has no culture of profiling/self-portrayal/showing-off. We seem to be no chatters, ranters, gossipers but still technocrats, focused on facts. Also Germany is said to have a culture which honors leadership (ahem) and role models and authority - so few people "dare" to step out and start blogging.

Raise hands those of you who run a blog! Is it anonymous, or does it show your name? Do you use it for rants, as a diary, for random thoughts, to keep in touch with your friends and family, or for showing off?

10:12 pm on Apr 29, 2005 (gmt 0)

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pmkpmk, I don't see the necessity for blogs. Then again if I come accross them, I exit as fast as my fingers can click. I can't stand running accross them personally. Does that make them bad? No. Just not my cup of tea is all. I keep a small journal (it's actually a physical notebook if you can beleive that) that nobody has access to. My thoughts are for me, and if I want to share, I'll go to 'foo' at webmasterworld ;0)

-- Zak

10:45 pm on Apr 29, 2005 (gmt 0)

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I started one once. Shortly after reading about their influence on serps. Didn't have the commitment to write anything though :(
10:53 pm on Apr 29, 2005 (gmt 0)

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I started one once. Shortly after reading about their influence on serps. Didn't have the commitment to write anything though :(

....me too!

12:30 am on Apr 30, 2005 (gmt 0)

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Okay, not having a blog is acceptable, although I admit to giving in to it last November, after several two entry false starts the past couple of years. Also, if you don't like to write, having a blog is just work. I find it to relaxing to rant about the ills of the world, but lots of people would hate it.

But, not having a digital camera. That's just wrong.

1:43 am on May 1, 2005 (gmt 0)

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started one, then shut it down, got bored, not my thing, I don't like the blog format on a technical level, don't ask me why, I just don't like it.

I could see using a CMS though, create real webpages, same difference almost, except you end up with a real site after a while.

There's some pretty good blogs out there, some people seem to really do well with that medium, especially technical blogs by programmers, those can be pretty interesting.

10:39 am on May 1, 2005 (gmt 0)

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If you're asking, then, no, you don't. Keeping a blog up to date is a fairly large deal once the initial enthusiasm wears off. I've had a blog die due to pure lack of time -- it ain't fun.
5:13 pm on May 1, 2005 (gmt 0)

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I used to work as a freelance journalist and book author, so it's not the writing what makes me worry. It's the time. Actually the idea starting a blog IS tempting. And the idea to rant is even more tmepting. Problem is that our niche is so small I could be spottet by peers, seniors and competitors really easy.

Oh, and for those of you who haven't noticed: the starting post wasn't entirely sincere. Hope you've seen the wink in my eyes.

6:30 pm on May 1, 2005 (gmt 0)

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I suspected the wink since it was you asking.
8:54 pm on May 1, 2005 (gmt 0)

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The lack of anonymity for some people is a real problem. I'm self-employed, so I can't blog about how much I hate my employer, although some days, I do because she's so damned lazy. ;)

I, oops, gave my blog url to my parents. I was writing about them selling our house, which we've had for 45 years. I thought they'd like to see what I had to say. What I hadn't counted on was them passing the link around to the rest of the family. My blog isn't full of my life drama (don't have much), so there's nothing really embarrassing in it; although, my mom wishes I wouldn't use that "language". Yeah, sometimes I use four letter words. Hey, it's my blog, my server, my pricey blog software, and I'm 40 and like to rant, so I'm gonna occasionally cuss. But a couple days ago, I had to give my computer illiterate brother the link, which means it's basically being given to my teenage nephews. While I haven't written anything to date that I would care if they read, it makes me hesitant to write some stuff. So, let this be a lesson to the rest of you. If you want to be anonymous, stay anonymous. And if you're going to write about your employer, you'd better do it in generic terms, so you don't get "Dooced".

6:04 am on May 2, 2005 (gmt 0)

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Sometimes if all of your friends who have avatars and screen nicks have one, you give in due to a combination of blog peer pressure/blog envy or just keeping up with the digerati.

Like it or not blogs are here to stay, and if you're going to play in the organic serps you should be aware of them and how to use them to your advantage. It's really hard to get an understanding of things like "tagging" and "folksonomies" unless you get your hands dirty and mess around with them. So even if you only have a few blogs for testing and experimentation, yes you do need a blog.

Blogging opens up so many more doors that a conventional website doesn't, I integrate one into almost every website I build.

7:37 am on May 2, 2005 (gmt 0)

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I integrate one into almost every website I build.

May I ask what types fo sites these are? Because the official sites I maintan are all company & product pages for some really high prized widgets.

7:47 am on May 2, 2005 (gmt 0)

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A blog doesn't have to look like a diary, it can look just like news updates. So, for a company, it can just look like an annoucement for a new widget or a widget accessory.
3:33 pm on May 2, 2005 (gmt 0)

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Set up a news alerts for your industry, be as specific or broad as you need to be. Read the news alerts that come in and make 1 - 2 postings every 1-2 days. In addition to keeping you up to date, you add fresh content.

You also get include your site in blog directories, and work the "blogosphere" circuit (bloggers link to other blogs more freely than websites).

7:40 pm on May 2, 2005 (gmt 0)

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You guys inspired me to become a blogger.
12:27 am on May 3, 2005 (gmt 0)

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You guys inspired me to become a blogger.

I love it! I think I'll subscribe to your RSS feed...

[edited by: pmac at 1:35 am (utc) on May 3, 2005]

3:51 pm on May 3, 2005 (gmt 0)

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A blog doesn't have to look like a diary, it can look just like news updates.

Oh, so in a way I am running one already, since our news updates can be accessed via a RSS feed :-)

P.S. Pity me - I'm on sick-leave. Not being able to breathe properly (allergic almost-schock) is a very worrysome expereince.

9:57 pm on May 3, 2005 (gmt 0)

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What exactly is a blog?
Although I have included a blog on one of my websites where visitors can enter their thoughts on a specific subject relevent to my website, I still am not clear what is the different between a blog and a chat line such as webmaster world?
Does anyone have a cystal clear defintion of a blog that we slow moving types could quickly understand?
11:49 pm on May 3, 2005 (gmt 0)

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"I still am not clear what is the different between a blog and a chat line such as webmaster world?"

WebmasterWorld is a forum, not a chatline, which is a different thing. Blogs arrange their data differently than forums, they tend to have calendars/categories which you post to, and they also tend to have a single poster, or a small group of posters, whereas forums are forums, places for the public to discuss things back and forth.

Forums are generally very linear, arranged by forums/subforums, into threads, which move up or down depending on the time of the last response.

Blogs work differently, usually they are single postings, time stamped, with between 1 and 10 time ordered entries per page.

Blogs also have a bunch of other stuff, rss feeds, link schemes between bloggers, which are automated largely. Forums are just single postings usually, forming threads, and the forums are collections of threads.

7:15 pm on May 5, 2005 (gmt 0)

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Well... actually... guess I simply want to try it. Sounds like fun - let's see where it ends up. May I ask for some advice?

Technology:
Well, there's blogger.com, and there's bloglines, and there's....? Mhmm... or is it better to set it up on my own server?

Language:
English, which I am accepteable in (but I guess everyone realizes pretty fast that I am not a native speaker) and which opens a (possibly) worldwide audience, or my native tongue with a rather small geographic focus?

Name:
My realname, which allows me to take the credit for whatever is creditworthy in the blog, or an alias which allows me to rant at will but prevents me from using it to promote my company or other personal projects (because I would be found out too easy)?

Monetizing:
Not at first, of course, but adding AdSense at a later stage might be a good idea?

ty

8:19 pm on May 5, 2005 (gmt 0)

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Couldn't resist. Installed Wordpress on my pet-server. Seemed easy enough once I managed to get myPhpAdmin running through a ssh shell with Lynx...

Nevertheless, any advice will be appricated.

3:29 am on May 7, 2005 (gmt 0)

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Blogs are an utterly interesting dynamic. Phenomenon actually, I have maintained a personal diary since 99. A extension to my girly journals under my mattress. But I have picked up a wide “fan” base which has lead to all sorts of interesting possibilities and new ventures.

Blogs regarding technology and punditry appear to be a dime a dozen and contain little ripe or leading information, mostly lifted stories and unsavoury tweaks / gossip. But I think “my diary” appeals to the exhibitionist in me, it’s grown that way anyhow, like a satin skirt.

A commercial site + blog is useless as far as my spending is concerned / concentrated, I really don’t care what an owner or supplier or “news” about the company is, that’s just me. A forum to address my main concerns seems more practical.

I use to view testosterone “diary’s” as effeminate, but I admit, I spend hours reading about how some men go about their day to day life, educational for these estrogens.

95% junk 5% jem is my thermometer on the current Blogosphere, on a good day.

Baby blogs, and wedding blogs and travel blogs are as boring in fancy font as they are on Kodak and forced friendship gatherings. I don’t know you, I don’t care, however these tend to be for-personal-friends specific.

All in all, if you have something to say, publish it, if you have something to peddle, sell it, but mixing the two creates a messy confusion and I begin to wonder where the trickery is and the initial concept begins to blur while I determine.

1:19 pm on May 8, 2005 (gmt 0)

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Thanks for the encouragement. I'm well on my way, and so far it's fun. Taking up considerably more time than I guessed though.
3:28 pm on May 11, 2005 (gmt 0)

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Na I don't run a blog. I started out doing so as part of my website, but I changed it into a column.

Running a blog demands a lot of work everyday, work that can be hard to fit in with making other website content.

So my advice would be, if you know that you won't be able to update and have quality content in the blog, or cover interesting aspects, you might as well put your effort into something else.

7:59 pm on May 30, 2005 (gmt 0)

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I'm doing this almost for a month now - and it is still fun!

And - hey - I made $1.08 in AdSense revenue so far! Whoaw! :-)

9:19 pm on May 30, 2005 (gmt 0)

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I did it for day. It sucked.