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Page history last edited by Jay Cross 15 years, 9 months ago



Jay's former page o' blogs.


Blogs (see Business Blogs down the page)



Will Richardson's links to educational blogs

Educational blogging by Stephen Downes

7 Things You Should Know about Blogs

Blog research Here is an outside look at blogs

A great explanation of blogs and eLearning by Don Clark (2006). Blogs & eLearning

Jay's Delicious tagged edublogs

Internet Time on blogs

How Blogs Work

Beth Kanter's Web 2.0 Guide




A nice historical perspective on blogging is Rebecca Blood's How Blogging Software Reshaped the Online Community. Communications of the ACM. December 2004.

Robin Good's TheWeblogProject movies is fun, but I'm biased since I'm in it.



Steve Rubel's 4Ps of blog marketing:

Passionate - Write about issues that are near and dear to your heart

Purposeful - Make sure you keep the end in mind; why are you blogging?

Present - Keep an eye on what's topical today

Positional - Take a stand on an issue and follow it


His short article in Wired on How to Run a Corporate Blog


Robert Patterson on NPR


Blogging is a perpetual resume. Distance no longer matters. We used to have to live in the city; today those of us who work with ideas can work anywhere. The new media can evolve into something like the French salon; the marquise hosts the conversation.


When Robert first came online, he wrote memos. Officious. The more human his speech, the more people read him. The less he became Robert and the more he became Rob, and now he thinks the blog is a path to self-understanding.




Oprah's Explanation of RSS


Mash-ups by Brian Lamb in Educase Review



For a blog tour with someone else, you might try Mobber

    Mobber is an Ajax based online application that allows people who are on a particular web page to chat privately or in a group. The main function is to offer social browsing, while site administrators have more control over their own site and its visitors. Despite other similiar services, Mobber displays a box that lets visitors create a personal profile - complete with photo - and then enables them to chat in real time. Thus meaning that Mobber gives you more than just a text name. Everyone is shown in a slidebar on the site, and you can choose you click on to have a one-on-one conversation. You can embed Mobber into your personal web page's html in few seconds to create an "instant community around your web site. Mobber is a free service.





And education...

Edu blogs

Blogging and the Changing Environment of Educaion and Collaboration

Beyond the blog, done entirely in FlickR (!)

nonscholae.org is a James Farmer's site devoted to the responsible use of blogs, instant messaging and other social software in schools.



Setting Up Your Blog with Blogger, Jay, 5 minutes

Tweaking Your Blog, Jay, 12 minutes

Tour of Learning Sites, Jay, 12 minutes


Blogs and community

Blogs are:

Author centered



Easy to distribute

Sources of new ideas and of syntheses of memes and their application

Potential sources for identifying emergent CoPs



They allow the sharing and telling of stories – which works for some people and not for others

Blogging habits range wildly between individuals – there is no right or wrong answer

Is the way into Blogging is through commenting? Certainly using aggregators to read multiple blogs can help to see what is developing in the “blogosphere” and give you material and become versed in the pattern language and to spark ideas

Blogs may not be the starting point for discussions but can be used for gathering comment on personal philosophical positions – they aren’t discussion boards

Linking to and from other blogs using blogrolls drives up readership if that is your goal – but it isn’t everyone’s goal! Technorati allows the links to be found and the value to be rated.

As a mechanism for developing and supporting a CoP the blog mechanism is probably a valuable supporting tool but appears not to be a cultivation tool in itself.

16 of the participants in this workshop shared their own blogs – and the majority (10) of those submit posts to more than one blog

The universal volume of blogs is too great to ingest – as a consumer you need to find a way of aggregating the blogs you read

The culture of open speech and strongly expressed opinions may not be acceptable in some cultures which are more hierarchical – and comfort with the common language is a barrier to wide readership if English is not your mother tongue

Audiences need to be incorporated into blogs – they may address more than one audience but equally may not satisfy any one of the potential audiences

Blogging communities in themselves could be a mechanism for supporting the learning element of a CoP - one possible mechanism for starting this activity is the “blog carnival” by which anyone and everyone with an interest in the topic can blog about the topic and then all the posts are consolidated to a central point (this may actually be made mechanically easier by Web2.0 using RSS feeders and tagging)

Blogs allow us to speak to many communities of which we are members

The key to creating a community via blogs is the approach to developing a discussion through blogging and creating “links of interest” through blogrolls and comments. This creates an emergent community which will be based on a discussion and common interest. So in this case the Web2.0 tools provide an ability to identify “community” and establish “domain”


Mitch Kapor (founder of Lotus, author of 1-2-3) isn't very fond of blogs. David Weinberger describes Mitch's presentation at Wikimania in August 2006...

Wikipedia challenges the assumption that to create good information, someone has to be in charge and it needs certified experts, Mitch says. \"The view people have of how the world has to work is just wrong.\" People think Wikipedia can't work because they assume it's as hard to remove grafitti there as it is in the real world. But, he says, all this is what the attendees here already know. [As always, I am paraphrasing and paying attention to what happens to strike me.

Now he talks about blogs vs. wikis. "I find blogs, especially political blogs, on the whole to be quite disappointing. To me, they're the talk radio of the Internet." The problem is that they're a series of atomic utterances, one after another. Rather than building on one another, they're like billiard balls. Blogs are about individual expression. They increase partisanship rather than increase thoughtful reflection. [Mitch's got to find himself some new blogs to read.] But, with wikis, people work on the same entry and improve it.

"As a technologist, I had some unlearning to do when I entered the Wikipedia community" because the tools weren't all that good. But, Jimmy Wales taught him that the "secret sauce" isn't technology. It's community. It's the shared values: NPOV, being prepared to be edited, learning to make your opponent's case. To become a Wikipedian is to internalize those values.

Mitch Kapor



Wikipedia challenges the assumption that to create good information, someone has to be in charge and it needs certified experts, Mitch says. "The view people have of how the world has to work is just wrong." People think Wikipedia can't work because they assume it's as hard to remove grafitti there as it is in the real world. But, he says, all this is what the attendees here already know. [As always, I am paraphrasing and paying attention to what happens to strike me.]

Now he talks about blogs vs. wikis. "I find blogs, especially political blogs, on the whole to be quite disappointing. To me, they're the talk radio of the Internet." The problem is that they're a series of atomic utterances, one after another. Rather than building on one another, they're like billiard balls. Blogs are about individual expression. They increase partisanship rather than increase thoughtful reflection. [Mitch's got to find himself some new blogs to read.] But, with wikis, people work on the same entry and improve it.

"As a technologist, I had some unlearning to do when I entered the Wikipedia community" because the tools weren't all that good. But, Jimmy Wales taught him that the "secret sauce" isn't technology. It's community. It's the shared values: NPOV, being prepared to be edited, learning to make your opponent's case. To become a Wikipedian is to internalize those values.


from Outboard Brain by Cory Doctorow


As a committed infovore, I need to eat roughly six times my weight in information every day or my brain starts to starve and atrophy. I gather information from many sources: print, radio, television, conversation, the Web, RSS feeds, email, chance, and serendipity. I used to bookmark this stuff, but I just ended up with a million bookmarks that I never revisited and could never find anything in.



Theoretically, you can annotate your bookmarks, entering free-form reminders to yourself so that you can remember why you bookmarked this page or that one. I don't know about you, but I never actually got around to doing this -- it's one of those get-to-it-later eat-your-vegetables best-practice housekeeping tasks like defragging your hard drive or squeegeeing your windshield that you know you should do but never get around to.



Until I started blogging. Blogging gave my knowledge-grazing direction and reward. Writing a blog entry about a useful and/or interesting subject forces me to extract the salient features of the link into a two- or three-sentence elevator pitch to my readers, whose decision to follow a link is predicated on my ability to convey its interestingness to them. This exercise fixes the subjects in my head the same way that taking notes at a lecture does, putting them in reliable and easily-accessible mentalregisters.


Managed knowledge.

As blogging goes mainstream—driven by tools from vendors such as iUpload and KnowNow—companies will discover that they are actually building organic, self-managing knowledge management systems, especially when coupled with enterprise search and business intelligence applications. This means that companies for the first time might actually be able to figure out who knows what, and when, within their organizations in real time.


Business Blogs


Adding Your Voice to the Conversation. Why CEOs Should Blog


Ochman's business blog article archive

Naked Conversations, Scoble's new book on business blogs

Scobleizer, the blog itself

Small Business Blogs







Markets are conversations

Cluetrain Manifesto, the rallying cry for honest communication in business

The Long Tail Business Blogs

Six types of business blog

Jonathan Schwartz, Sun Microsystems

Sun's Blog Policy

Ross Mayfield Fortune 500 business blogs

Corante case study of Euro pharm company's internal blog use. See also Traction, which provides enterprise-level blogging software.

CIO, Michael Schrage on Project Blogs***

Learning2005 podcast. Mark Oehlert interviewing Dave Lee regarding blogs and wikis in the workplace.



Blogging the Market

 by George Defermos


It has been repeatedly argued that the process/technology of weblogs offers a novel approach towards the continuation of democratic public discourse. Within the boundaries of the firm though, the implementation of weblogs takes a whole new dimension to realising that weblogs are more than the sum of its parts: more than vibrant public forums and frequently updated streams-of-consciousness, alternative forms of publishing and online outbursts of gonzo journalism, and personal diaries. They are the embodiment of online self-organising social systems, are essentially characterised by management decentralisation and ultimately threaten to destabilise current organisational structures and re-invent the scope of management. Provided that weblogs are not co-opted by rigid corporate policies that aim at stifling the creative spirit that fosters innovation - one of the reasons for having weblog communities at the first place - weblogs can be successfully deployed within the organisation with a pervasive effect across all the stages of the value chain "achieving a greater return on connection from employee, customer and partner relationships". As an extension, they can possibly involve all interested groups; regardless of their level of attachment to the company.


In fact, weblogs have an infinite spectrum of potential applications whose viability is based on the dual understanding that weblogs are an attempt to break free from the dehumanised, standardised, conformant with corporate guidelines on how to address an audience PR speak that customers are increasingly sceptical of, and a flexible virtual platform onto which a process of cross-fertilisation among individual thoughts and ideas unfolds.







MP3 File


Learning2005 podcast. Mark Oehlert interviewing Allison Anderson regarding blogs and wikis in the workplace.


MP3 File

Business Week 2/14/06 on business blogs

FEBRUARY 14, 2006

News Analysis

By Stephen Baker


The Inside Story on Company Blogs

Corporate America may fear critical comments in public blogs, but it isn't ignoring the medium's potential for improving internal communication

The numbers are downright puny. According to The Fortune 500 Business Blogging Wiki (a list of blogs provided by employees about their companies and products), only 22 of the 500 largest U.S. companies operate public blogs from their executive suites. That amounts to a measly 4.4%. Has the blogging sensation passed corporations by?


Not by a long shot. Instead of public blogs, think about blog technology. That's the focus for many leading companies around the world. From McDonald's (MCD) to Cannondale Bicycle, corporations are using the software to revamp internal communications, reach out to suppliers, and remake corporate Intranets. Often the site doesn't look much different from what it's replacing. Sometimes there's nothing particularly bloggy about the results.


But these corporate initiatives are interactive and cheap to deploy -- making them an attractive form of communication. "Blogs are a way to bring our knowledge together," says Dave Weick, chief information officer at McDonald's.


CONVERSATION PIECES. Over the last month, Cannondale has opened its corporate Web site to 15 of its sales and marketing staffers. Each one now has the tools to file his or her own updates, press releases, photos, and news about the race teams Cannondale sponsors, says Janet Maurice, the company's Webmaster.

It may not seem like they're blogging. They're simply using software to send information. Sometimes they do it from remote Internet cafés. In time, they'll be able to file from cell phones. But each mailing, technically, is a blog post. And the program will expand to a host of Cannondale staffers and affiliates. "We're transferring our corporate content management system to blogs," Maurice says.


Why are blogs supplanting traditional corporate Intranets? They're a snap to set up, and cheap to run. That's why the blog universe -- as counted by Technorati, the leading blog search engine -- has tripled to 27 million in the last year. They dwarf the number of personal Web pages, which require more technical expertise.

What's more, blogs are designed to change daily and -- importantly -- to receive comments from the public. This means that while traditional corporate Intranets are static, blogs generate conversation.


EXTRA VALUE. The first corporate blogger at McDonald's was Chief Operating Officer Michael Roberts, who launched his internal blog last fall. He used it to spread information through the company's global operations and receive feedback. Now, according to Weick, McDonald's is distributing blog access to thousands ofemployees, who will use them to report on operations at restaurants worldwide.


The question at McDonald's and Cannondale is whether they'll extend blogs outside the company, to their customers. Already, newspapers such as the Houston Chronicle are building communities of bloggers, which provide new sources of information -- and new advertising platforms.


Robin Hopper, CEO of iUpload, the Toronto-based outfit that hosts the McDonald's and Cannondale blogs, predicts that growing numbers of companies will distribute blogs in an effort to build social networks around their brands and products. "It's a whole new way to market," he says. "People willingly provide all sorts of demographic information on blogs." Companies can then use that to target them with customized services and advertisements.


BUILDING TRUST. Hopper says that media and entertainment outfits are already sprouting blogs by the thousands. For example, the TV show Canadian Idol, the cousin of Fox's American Idol, provides a blog to every potential contestant.


They use them to post their bios and pictures -- which provide material for the show's producers. Fans can also post on www.idolblogs.ca, a blogging community that has reached 40,000, says Hopper.


Could Cannondale follow suit? Not so fast, warns Maurice. "With every great technology comes the fear that it might go out of control," she says. So she's launching Cannondale's blogging program cautiously, starting with brand managers and their teams. Later it will extend from so-called trusted bloggers, whose posts go up on the site automatically, to "untrusted bloggers," whose submissions must be edited.


EVERYONE'S A CRITIC. Companies interested in opening up branded blogs to the broad public face plenty of risks. Opponents of the company could use them to spread criticisms or nasty rumors -- and the host outfit would face the wrath of bloggers if it were seen to shut down or censor customers' entries.


Conversely, if criticism appears on the blogs, the company can learn quickly and respond. For such giants as Wal-Mart (WMT) and McDonald's -- both subjects of blistering documentaries recently -- such an early warning system might prove to be worth the gamble.


Sun CEO Jonathan Schwart, speaking at Supernova 2006:

Q: Some say every CEO should blog. You do. But not a lot of others.

A: Five years ago there were CEOs who didn’t do email. The job of any leader is to communicate the vision of the company, your passion for the company. Whether it’s a blog or a weekly column. Blogs are very efficient. I want to stay connected to a diffuse marketplace. We have two constituents: the CIO, who is making fewer decisions. And the developers. They hang out on the web, they look at what you have to say. That’s the constituency that can transform Sun’s business.


Study: Blogging Begets Media Coverage, Traffic According to a new study by Porter Novelli and Cymfony 76 percent of corporations that blog have seen a direct spike in Web traffic and related media coverage. Additionally, some 42 percent said at least one post on their blog has affected the company or brand, in most cases in a positive way. The study also found that 63 percent of the companies surveyed said they had to blog because of a perceived need to participate in the blogging phenomenon rather than to reach a specific objective.




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