Blogosphere Archives

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2 New Blogs on the Block

17 September, 2004 2:34 PM

I've got a couple of new blogs on my regular blog rounds that I'd love to share with you. One is tribe m - which is written by a good mate 'D'. Knowing who he is and what he does - I'm sure it will be an interesting read.

The other is AgeWatch which is an interesting concept written by 'NorthcoteKnob' who will be taking a bit of a critical look at Melbourne's newspaper - 'The Age'. Aussie might know the show 'Media Watch' this is a blog version focused upon one newspaper. Interesting.

Both will be blogs worth following, both are by Aussies - drop by and say G'day!

Headaches - Sleeplessness - Digestive Problems - Social awkwardness - the Bloggers Curse

14 September, 2004 7:25 PM

The Greenman has an interesting post titled That Blog Is Bad For Your Health which looks at a study into characteristics of people who write diaries (which can't be that dissimilar to bloggers). Should be some uplifting findings shouldn't it? After all blogs are great aren't they!? So what are these findings?

'They are more likely to suffer from headaches, sleeplessness, digestive problems and social awkwardness than people who do not maintain a diary, on line or otherwise.'

Hmmm - ok. So how many of you bloggers out there does that describe?

Here is my response over at the Greenman

'eerrr....

- headaches....only generally before morning coffee....
- sleeplessness.....ok - now you're talking about me
- digestive problems....peppermint tea is a wonderful thing
- social awkwardness.....MIND YOUR OWN BUSINESS - STOP PRESSING MY BUTTONS - WHO ARE YOU TO MAKE JUDGEMENT CALLS ABOUT ME - I'VE GOT FRIENDS....A COUPLE OF THEM I'VE EVEN MET IN PERSON!....'

So the question remains - does blogging give us these ailments or do we blog because we have them?

lukephillips.com

11 September, 2004 10:49 AM


Fellow Melbournian blogger, Luke Phillips, has finally gone and registered a domain name for his blog - very nice one too. I think I should be able to remember lukephillips.com

Nice.

The great Blog Ad debate

5 September, 2004 11:30 PM

Douglas Rushkoff and Jeff Jarvis are having an interesting 'discussion' on whether advertisements on blogs can corrupt a blogger's work.

Douglas Rushkoff writes - 'there might be a value in ad-free blogging; that doing it for money, for ads, may not change our writing on a conscious level, but that we may be changed - yes, corrupted - by the ads we're endorsing, er, displaying....' Douglas adds another post here.

Jeff Jarvis replies - 'But if you want ads to help support yourself in this new medium -- and thus support the growth of this medium with more contributions from more voices and more perspectives with more information and conversation and value, then you can do that. Maybe you can even quit working for The Man; what could be more counterculture than that?

The beauty of this medium -- yes, the rave quality of it -- is that I can do what I want to do and you can do what you want to do and our freedom is not zero-sum. It ain't a slam dance, man.'

Ken Layne enters the debate writing - 'In the media world, rejecting Capitalism is the exclusive realm of those who have succeeded as capitalists. I'd love to be rich and not give a damn about those BlogAds or Google ad strips. I'd be real happy to have CBS and BBC and a bunch of publishers sending me checks. But they don't. I work on the Web. And telling me I shouldn't be able to make a living as you do -- not that there's any chance in hell of that happening -- is like telling starving kids in Sudan how lucky they are not to be corrupted by McDonald's.'

Whilst I've always acknowledged that blogging for dollars has the potential to compromise bloggers I tend to come down on Jeff's side of this debate. Really it comes down to choice. I agree with Douglas (and Jeff) that putting ads on one's site does lead to some interesting decisions and choices - but I'd argue that this is true for all bloggers as they navigate the medium of blogging.

You see I think a blogger can be 'compromised' simply in who they link to. How many bloggers out there link regularly to A list bloggers with the hope that it might get them noticed by that blogger? How many bloggers have left comments on other blogs with the hope of others surfing back to their blog from the link? How many bloggers write about a topic they are not really interested in with the hope of creating some controversy to generate hits?

Of course not all bloggers blog this way - but they are some of the issues/temptations that most bloggers face - especially when starting out.

I guess whether it comes to these issues - or putting ads on your site - it all comes down to character, being aware of the possibility of compromise, staying true to yourself and being transparent. I'm also a big believer in being honest in your blogging. I have no issue with the fact that this blog has a few ads and they earn me a few dollars. My other blogs earn me more and are emerging into something of a business - and I think that that is pretty clear from their set up. If however I posted about books that I'd never read or movies I'd never seen just to put ads for them up (without a disclaimer) I'd be compromising myself somewhat.

Blog Plagiarism - How would you respond?

2 September, 2004 4:36 PM

You're cruising the internet - searching Google on some of your pet topics of interest to see if you can find anything new and interesting. One search result catches your eye - there is something about the title that triggers something in your mind - it looks like something you'd be interested in - could be that perfect site that will answer all your questions on the topic at hand.

You click the link and wait for the site to load. It is a pretty simple web page - uncluttered - just an article and some ads. The first sentence or two of the article are intriguing - they resonate with your experience - the person who has written this article is really coming from a similar perspective to you. In fact as you read you discover that they really really have had a similar experience to you - its like they are reading your mind even.

But then you come to a puzzling sentence - the author of this article makes reference to a couple of blogs that THEY run - blogs which REALLY resonate with your own experience - because they are your blogs!

It suddenly dawns upon you as to why title of the article grabbed you so quickly on Google - it was because you'd written that title a few months before. In fact you'd spent a whole morning writing this article (posted in its entirety) - researching, thinking, planning and writing it out.

Someone has lifted it straight off your site - including the title, personal comments and even internal links to other articles on your own blog. There is no attribution to your work, no crediting link to your blog and no acknowledgment that this is not original content. You've never seen or heard of this site before - no permission has been sought or given and what's more the site is commercial in nature and making money from your work.

So how does one respond in such a situation? An email to the site concerned asking for an explanation and removal of content raises no response initially.

Update: I'm happy to report that the threat of shame seemed to work. I appreciate the advice and encouragement set out below. The site in question emailed to say that they'd made a mistake in publishing my article - it was a 'test page' they say (despite them having it linked from their footer on every other page in their site). Anyway - dilemma over - until next time - this about the 10th time this has happened to me in 18 months (just the instances I've found).

Adsense for Blogger Bloggers

1 September, 2004 11:24 PM

Well it seems that Google have decided to let bloggers who use the Blogger system actually earn a few dollars from their blogs using the Adsense program. These are the ads that I've been running on my blogs for some time now - but they were previously not allowed on Blogger blogs. Before this latest development Blogger blogs had ads run on them which Google/Blogger took all the revenue from - now they are willing to share it with you as is outlined here. This is an interesting, and I suspect smart, move from Google/Blogger - don't think that they will lose out from giving you a cut of the ads - they will be counting on blogger who sign up being motivated by the reward to blog in larger numbers, quantity of content and about topics that pay higher paying ads which will not only bring bloggers money but increase the cut that Google take.

Those of you considering using the Adsense system on your blog should know that its not a get rich quick scheme but it does add a new dimension to your blogging experience. As I've written previously, there are ways of maximizing your adsense income. Have fun with it - you might find it pays for your blog hosting costs, ISP fees or even provide you with a bit of pocket money.

Blogging - Giving a Voice to the Voiceless

30 August, 2004 12:26 AM

In just a few hours the Olympics finish up for another 4 years. With it we'll be tying up some loose ends at the Olympics Blog and then sleeping for weeks. It has been a pretty amazing experience to run a blog on such a global event. I've learnt a heap about blogging in the past few weeks which I'm sure I'll utilize in the months ahead in considering the starting of some new blogs.

I guess the most exciting realization has been a confirmation of the amazing potential of blogging as a medium to communicate with people on a global level. By the end of today over 1.5million people will have stopped by the site (over 4 weeks) to read what a couple of guys sitting in front of their TVs in the middle of the night on the other side of the world from the event itself are reporting about it.

The mind boggles really as to what blogging can achieve with a bit of planning, effort, creativity and foresight.

The question left in my mind tonight is around 'what next?' It has been an exciting couple of weeks of experimenting but what do we do with the lessons learnt? There are a few more ideas for commercial/business blogs percolating in my mind - some of us have been talking about some interesting dreams and possibilities to capitalize on what we've learnt but I'm wondering if there might be something more?

One of the streams of thinking I'm currently pursuing is 'blogging for social change'. Bear with me here, it's late and I'm thinking out loud.

You see one of the remarkable things about blogging is that it gives ordinary people a voice that they might not have had previously. On a personal level this is true - when I started blogging my network was very local and quite limited in number. Blogging has opened this up considerably - I've 'met' people world wide who are doing and thinking about very similar things to me. It has given me opportunity not only to learn from them but also to contribute - to have my say in the emerging conversation.

This is a story that is not unique to me but that is world wide in nature. Blogging has given millions of people voices - some have used it for good, some not so good.

The thing is that there are a lot of people in our world without voices. The voiceless include the poor, the sick, the grieving, the marginalized, the ignored, the hidden, the abused, the minorities etc of our world. I believe as that its part of my responsibility as a human being is to be a part of a life giving process to these groups of people. This comes partly from my faith and understanding of God who has a heart for these people, but also out of something deep within me that I think we all have - a desire to make a difference.

One of the few things I do know when working with the marginalized is the importance of being given permission to speak - to have a voice - to be heard.

Could blogging be used more in this process? I've heard of a few instances of this kind of blogging - there is the Homeless Guy's blog for example which has had quite a bit of press but I'm wondering if others know of others?

I'm wanting to do a bit of research into this - but am also wanting to do something with what I find and am really open to ideas. I saw a story on TV a while back of a young paraplegic guy who was given a blog a few weeks after an accident that took him mobility from him and how it gave him a real sense of purpose in life to have his story told and know thousands of people were reading it. I havn't been able to find his blog yet (anyone know of it?).

I really see some incredible potential in this and would invite others to share their own ideas, journey and links.

110 million People Read Blogs

2 August, 2004 4:11 PM

Blog Count is a great blogging stats resource that is trying to measure the spread and influence of blogging. One of their latest posts estimated that there could be as many as 70 million bloggers globally and up to 110 million blog readers world wide. The spreads of these estimates are pretty wide (as follows) but even at the lower end its a fairly large number. The %'s are those of total internet users.

"Blog Authoring: 2% - 7% (Is this a huge spread?) =
3.7 - 13.0 bloggers in the US
20 - 70 million bloggers worldwide
Blog Readers: 11% =
20.4 million blog readers in the US
110 million readers worldwide"

Source - blogcount: 110 million people read weblogs? Blog recognition rises: Blogs beat Britney Spears by 23%

Sunburned in Melbourne

28 July, 2004 10:10 AM

Jenn has started blogging again at Sunburned - Yay!

This time its a photoblog - very cool.

Jenn lives in Melbourne so its a good way of seeing a bit of my city. Enjoy.

E-vangelism.com Relaunched

27 July, 2004 12:09 PM

Andrew Careaga has blogified his old e-vangelism.com website. Looking good - will be one to keep an eye on.

Sending Daryl a Birthday Wish

25 July, 2004 12:27 PM

Rachel is starting a campaign for people to wish Darryl (currently away) a happy birthday.

She wants us to come up with a:

"* A verse/saying/quote/cool memory you have of him as encouragement to Darryl
* And for fun, a picture somewhere on the Internet that makes you think of Darryl or you think he'd have fun seeing."

Testing Ecto

23 July, 2004 1:14 PM

This is my first test blog using Ecto Blogging Software. It allows me to blog while off line (uploaded later) which will change the way I blog for sure!

If this works I can see myself spending a lot more time in my local cafe blogging.

Update - I have to say that this is one of the best blogging tools I've every had the pleasure of using. Check out the great features for the Mac Version and the Windows Version.

Remote blogging, drag and drop image upload (including thumbnail functionality), full functional html editing (hard to get on a Mac in Safari on MT - previously I had to know a lot of html code), multi blog enabled plus heaps more.

Its sped up my blogging heaps - using the "New entry with selection" feature all you have to do is highlight text that you want to quote in your web browser and you can blog it (complete with the URL) with just a click or two. Excellent stuff.

2004 Underbloggers Revealed

22 July, 2004 12:07 PM

Jeff Jarvis was asked to provide a starter list of suggested blogs. Here is his list which contains some quality blogs. Who would you add to his list? I'm sure he wouldn't mind you popping over to make a suggestion or two... Well I hope he won't mind.

It reminded me that I should close nominations for my Celebrating the Underblog Project for 2004. I've posted the nominated blogs alphabetically (I'm sure there are some errors as I was overwhelmed by the response) as follows. There are hundreds - maybe even a thousand (anyone got the patience to count?) - of blogs. I've surfed through a lot of them and there are some quality ones. Head over and have a surf and link up to your favorites to help get some under rated bloggers the attention they deserve.

A - C | D - H | I - L | M - Q | R - T | U - Z

It is interesting to see what some people consider an Underblog to be - there are definitely some included that I don't think fit the category - however each to their own. Have a look and see what you think.

Nominations are now closed for the 2004 intake.

Blog of the Week

22 July, 2004 10:39 AM

I got a bit of a buzz today while I was down the road having a coffee and I was flicking through the newspaper to find that one of my blogs is 'Blog of the Week'.

Baby Photoblog

20 July, 2004 1:10 PM

I just stumbled on this touching photoblog of a father who is documenting the first days of life of his prematurely born child. What an amazing idea - the photos are beautifully shot and the stories/updates really draw you in.

Meeting More Bloggers

19 July, 2004 1:04 PM

Just had a coffee with fellow blogger from Canberra, Darren Wright ('the other Darren' as he signs comments on my blog). Darren has a fair bit of online presence with blogs such as An Accidental Theoblogian and The Alternative Hymnal both of which are excellent examples of blogging. I especially enjoy The Alternative Hymnal for its suggestions on ways songs that wouldn't normally feature in church can be used.

Its nice to meet fellow bloggers. I didn't mention it a couple of weeks ago but I also meet Melbourne blogger, Nathan from My Virtual Faith. We ended up chatting for hours at a local cafe - great guy. His blog has been quiet lately while he rethinks the site and develops some new excellent online resources.

Link Up?

17 July, 2004 11:17 AM

If anyone out there wants to help a couple of blogs we're working on climb the rankings in search engines we'd sure appreciate your help with any links you might like to offer to the sites. They are:

Olympics

and

Australian Idol

If you feel so moved and would like to link to either or both (using the words Olympics and Australian Idol) on your blogroll, in a post, on a footer, in your links page....where ever....that would sure help us heaps.

By the Way, we're still looking for bloggers to join in our Olympics Group blog - it is a good way to expose your blog to thousands of readers of the next 6 weeks. Shoot me an email if you'd like to contribute a post or two every day or so.

Overbloggers

16 July, 2004 1:34 PM

Flying Space Monkey has bounced off my Underblog campaign (calling for nominations of underrated blogs) with his own Overblogger campaign where he's asking for nominations of 'overrated blogs'.

He's got a little criticism to say the least - but its an interesting idea.

On 'Christian' Blogs

3 July, 2004 7:38 PM

In the comments to my last post where I said:

'To be honest I get a bit turned off by blogs that are 'overtly Christian' too'

Felix responded by asking why I wrote that. I thought I should explain as it is a comment that two people have already emailed to ask about. Thanks to those who have asked for clarification and expressed concern at my statement. Let me attempt a response.

Perhaps I shouldn't have used the terms 'turned off' or 'overtly Christian' - I was just using Fat Buddha's quote as a basis for what I was saying.

Rather if I was to put it into my own words I would say that I personally find that SOME 'Christian' Blogs a tad dull and one dimensional.

I'll probably get in trouble for saying that but I just don't read many blogs that post only about faith issues these days. Maybe its a stage I'm going through but I guess I get enough 'Christian' input from other mediums and from life in general.

I like to read blogs that are more diverse in their subject matter - that don't just talk about the spiritual life of their owner or issues of theology or spirituality. Its not that I never read such stuff, but rather I like to see what else a blogger is interested in.

In my 32 years of life I've met a lot of Christians whose whole life seems wrapped up in their Christianity. Whilst I see some good in this (who I am is very linked to my faith in Christ) it also worries me. It is possible to go through life without really interacting with the world one lives in and living in something of a holy enclave. I think we're called to engage with our world and not isolate ourselves from it.

Having said this I am not against blogs that choose to only write on Christian issues - I think there is a place for such focused writing on blogs (similarly to the place for 'Christian' books. I respect bloggers who choose to take this approach - however blogging for me is not about this. It is an extension of a variety of areas in my life (including spirituality and my church) and therefore I tend to be drawn to other blogs that are like this. I still read a variety of Christian Blogs on a daily basis but they tend to be one's that pick up a variety of topics and themes such as Tall Skinny Kiwi, Jonny Baker, Bloggedy Blog, Jordon Cooper, Cre8d, Backyard Missionaries, Bene Diction, Neurotribe, Flying Blue Sky and Serenity Dawn (to name just a few).

I hope that clarifies things a little.

Fat Buddha on The Living Room

3 July, 2004 12:44 PM

From The Whole Wide World of Fat Buddha

'I keep finding my way back to The Living Room. Instinctively, I don't like it, because it is so overtly Christian, but bugger me, it has some good stuff on it, especially for bloggers.'

Thanks Fat Buddha - I try and mix it up so that there is something for everyone. To be honest I get a bit turned off by blogs that are 'overtly Christian' too (but don't tell anyone).

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