Enter the Blogosphere: Adventures in Blogging

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Follow Chad Mairn as he enters the Blogosphere and explains what a blog is and, more importantly, how libraries can benefit from using them. During this hands-on session, Chad will demonstrate …

Follow Chad Mairn as he enters the Blogosphere and explains what a blog is and, more importantly, how libraries can benefit from using them. During this hands-on session, Chad will demonstrate step-by-step how to create a library blog and highlight some of this vast and exciting territory called the Blogosphere.

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  • 1. Enter the Blogosphere: Adventures in Blogging Chad Mairn, M.L.I.S. St. Petersburg College M.M. Bennett Library VIP Conference May 11, 2007
  • 2. Objectives
    • Discover what a blog is and how it can be used to promote library services.
    • Learn how to plan for and set-up a blog for your library.
    • Search for and subscribe to a variety of blogs using RSS technology.
    • Explore other “widgets” to add to your library blog.
  • 3. What is a Blog?
    • And those trout ... well, they're sweet 'cause they only eat Blogs
    • And Blogs , after all, are the world's sweetest frogs
    • And the reason they're sweet is, whenever they lunch
    • It's always the world's sweetest bees that they munch
    • And the reason no bees can be sweeter than these...
    • They only eat blossoms off Beezlenut Trees
    • And those Beezlenut Blossoms are sweeter than sweet
    • And that's why I nabbed several eggs from the Kweet.
    • -- Dr. Seuss ( 1953 ) "Scrambled Eggs Super."
  • 4. Seriously, Blogs are …
    • web pages that are organized by dated entries and resemble an online diary for the world to read.
    • an easy way to exchange and present information.
    • about three things: “Frequency, Brevity and Personality“ [ Source: Evan Williams, the creator of Blogger].
    • extremely popular! 39 % of Internet users, i.e., nearly 57 million American adults, read blogs. [ Source : Lenhart & Fox].
  • 5. The Weblog Project
    • … the first open-source movie documentary about blogs and bloggers.
    • http://www.theweblogproject.com/
  • 6. Blogs can look like …
  • 7. Why read a blog?
  • 8. Why read a blog?
    • Why read anything?
    • Information is current/dynamic/linked.
    • Opportunity for instant commentary/conversation.
    • It is coded in our DNA to “converse, communicate, argue publicly, learn collaboratively, share experiences and archive collective knowledge …” [ Source: Burstein].
    • Couple the above fact with the “incredibly powerful, fast, ubiquitous technologies” and its easy to see why blogging is so popular [ Source: Kline, xiv].
  • 9. Why create a library blog?
  • 10. Create a library blog to …
    • promote library events.
    • connect to your community.
    • support devoted library users.
    • reach out to potential users.
    • say something interesting.
    • allow your patrons to say something interesting.
    • enhance book discussions.
    • provide book reviews/recommendations.
    • create a literary guide.
    • write a library newspaper.
    • revisit and perhaps revise work.
    • interact with your colleagues.
    • be creative, critically think, and write about issues interesting to you.
    • accomplish almost anything you want.
  • 11. Things to consider when planning …
    • Construct a clear blog mission statement that supports your Library’s mission (Audience? Message? Purpose?).
    • Select a suitable Blogging software platform.
    • Develop posting policies and procedures.
    • Explore acceptable use and copyright statement s from other institutions (e.g., SPC’s statements ).
    • Creative Commons License vs. copyright.
    • Work collaboratively.
    • Write responsibly!
  • 12. Popular Blogging Platforms
    • Mostly Free:
    • Blogger: http:// www.blogger.com
    • Bloxsom: http://www.blosxom.com/
    • B2: http://www.cafelog.com
    • City Desk 2.0: http://www.fogcreek.com/CityDesk/
    • Live Journal: http:// www.livejournal.com /
    • Moveable Type: http://www.moveabletype.org
    • Nucleus CMS: http://nucleuscms.org/
    • PMachine: http:// www.pmachine.com /
    • Word Press: http:// wordpress.org /
    • Not Free:
    • Manila: http:// manila.userland.com
    • Radio: http:// radio.userland.com
    • TypePad: http:// www.typepad.com
    • Expression Engine (Ellis Lab, formally pMachine): http:// ellislab.com /
    • Blogger Forum: http:// www.bloggerforum.com /
  • 13. Templates and Code Changes
    • Most blogging platforms have web templates for easy one-step web design.
    • Code changes are NOT necessary.
    • FYI: old (Beta) Blogger.com advertising/search component can be removed with the <noembed> tag.
    • SPC’s blog: added OPAC search + advanced blog search, Odeo Voicemail, LibraryThing random catalog, AutoCast Audio file, FeedBurner XML feed, FeedBlitz email alerts, Technorati ping, and more.
  • 14. Searching for blogs and feeds.
    • http:// blogsearch.google.com /
    • http:// www.technorati.com /
    • http:// www.libdex.com/weblogs.html
    • http:// search.blogger.com /
    • http:// www.sphere.com /
    • http://www.icerocket.com/
    • http://www.blogpulse.com -- Search RSS Feeds --
    • http://www.syndic8.com/
    • http:// www.feedster.com /
  • 15. Many blogs are syndicated.
    • A feed is an XML-based file (machine-readable) that blog aggregators “understand.” Content can be &quot;syndicated&quot; (i.e., to join together) in order to be distributed on the web. Formats such as RSS and Atom are used to structure the XML file.
    Think ‘subscription’ instead of ‘syndication.’ Subscribe and content automatically comes to you, like a magazine subscription.
  • 16. So what do all those RSS, XML, and Atom buttons do?
    • They create a link to a small file that one copies/pastes into a news aggregator. (e.g. http://tametheweb.com/atom.xml )
    • According to W3.org RSS is RDF Site Summary (version 1.0) .
    • AKA: - Really Simple Syndication (v. 2.0)
    • - Rich Site Summary (v 0.91, v 1.0)
    • - RDF Site Summary (v 0.9 and v 1.0)
    • - Real-time Simple Syndication (v 2.0)
  • 17. Don’t worry about this code!
    • <?xml version=&quot;1.0&quot; encoding=&quot;ISO-8859-1&quot; ?>
    • - <!-- generator=&quot;FeedCreator 1.7.2&quot;
    • -->
    • - <rss version=&quot;2.0&quot;>
    • - <channel>
    • <title>Squidoo : Lens : Library 2.0 in Three Easy Steps</title>
    • <description>This lens is meant to augment a presentation I gave at the Broward County Library Reference Forum on May 9.&amp;nbsp; There were about forty library professionals in attendance and I want to thank you all for enduring 122 slides!&amp;nbsp; The lens is supposed to be a one-stop shop for bringing yourself up to speed on Library 2.0. ...</description>
    • <link>http://www.squidoo.com/EasyL2</link>
    • <lastBuildDate>Thu, 11 May 2006 12:18:18 +0100</lastBuildDate>
    • <generator>FeedCreator 1.7.2</generator> - <item>
    • <title>Library 2.0 in Three Easy Steps updated Tue May 9 2006 9:13 pm CDT</title>
    • <link>http://www.squidoo.com/EasyL2</link>
    • <description>This lens is meant to augment a presentation I gave at the Broward County Library Reference Forum on May 9.&amp;nbsp; There were about forty library professionals in attendance and I want to thank you all for enduring 122 slides!&amp;nbsp; The lens is supposed to be a one-stop shop for bringing yourself up to speed on Library 2.0.&amp;nbsp; Just click away on the links lists and have fun!&amp;nbsp; If you think it could be better, click on the &amp;quot;contact the lensmaster&amp;quot; link on the right and tell me how.</description>
    • <pubDate>Wed, 10 May 2006 02:13:03 +0100</pubDate>
    • </item>
    • </channel>
    • </rss>
    Just copy/paste the URL into your aggregator.
  • 18. What is an aggregator?
    • Web or client-based software (aka feed readers, news readers etc.) that retrieve syndicated (i.e., subscription) Web content. Updated content comes to you!
    • Bloglines (free, web-based, and mobile) www.bloglines.com
    • Extensive list of aggregators (RSS 2.0): http://blogs.law.harvard.edu/tech/directory/5/aggregators
    • RSS and aggregator tutorial can be found at http://www.palinet.org/rss/toti/tsstutorial.htm
  • 19. Bloglines
  • 20. Bloglines in Action
    • Create a free Bloglines account.
    • Search for and subscribe to blog feeds.
    • Dynamic content comes to you!
    • Organize your feeds into folders.
    • Publish your “blogroll” (i.e., list of subscribed to blogs).
  • 21. Adding Syndication
    • Blogger automatically generates an RSS site feed. Simply create a link to the feed so people can easily subscribe.
    • FeedBurner ( http://www.feedburner.com/fb/a/home ). Also acts as a podcast feed! Great publicizing tool (e.g., create “chicklets” and feed icons, SpringWidgets etc.)
    • May want to add the blog’s URL to other podcatcher programs. Another extensive list can be found at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Podcatchers
  • 22. Statcounter http://www.statcounter.com/ -- free invisible web tracker. --
  • 23. Some Notable Blogs
    • -- Talking with Talis: http://talk.talis.com/
    • -- Electronic Frontier Foundation: http://www.eff.org/bloggers/lg/
    • -- Florida Library Association: http:// flalib.blogspot.com /
    • -- LIS News: http:// www.lisnews.com /
    • -- Blog Without a Library: http:// www.blogwithoutalibrary.net /
    • -- Blogger Book Club: http://www.roselle.lib.il.us/YouthServices/BookClub/Bloggerbookclub.htm
    • -- Secret Life of Bees Literary Blog: http://weblogs.hcrhs.k12.nj.us/bees/
    • -- Weblogg-ed: http://www.weblogg-ed.com/
    • -- Blogroots-- http://www.blogroots.com/resources.blog
    • -- Educational Weblogs-- http://educational.blogs.com/
    • -- Catalogablog: http://catalogablog.blogspot.com/
    • -- Open Stacks: http:// openstacks.net/os /
    • -- Waterboro Public Library: http://www.waterborolibrary.org/blog.htm
    • -- LITA Blog: http://litablog.org/
    • -- Look at other’s blogrolls.
  • 24. RSS Resources
    • Aggregators:
    • AmphetaDesk: http://www.disobey.com/amphetadesk/
    • Bloglines: http://www.bloglines.com
    • NetNewsWire: http://ranchero.com/netnewswire/
    • NewsMonster: http://www.newsmonster.org/
    • NewzCrawler: http://www.newzcrawler.com/
    • SharpReader: http://www.sharpreader.net/
    • Introduction to RSS: http://www.downes.ca/files/RSS%5fEduc.htm
    • Fagan Finder: http://www.faganfinder.com/search/rss.shtml
    • Lockergnome's RSS Resource: http://rss.lockergnome.com/
  • 25. Consulted Resources
    • Burstein, Dan. “From Cave Painting to Wonkette: A Short History of Blogging.” 28 March 2007. < www.blogrevolt.com/intro.pdf >.
    • Fichter, Darlene. 2003. “Why and How to Use Blogs to Promote Your Library's Services.” Marketing Library Services. 17, no.6. 28 March 2007. < http://www.infotoday.com/MLS/nov03/fichter.shtml >.
    • Kline, David and Dan Burstein. “Blog! How the Newest Media Revolution is Changing Politics, Business, and Culture. New York:  CDS Books, 2005.
    • Lenhart, Amanda, and Susannah Fox. “Bloggers: A Portrait of the Internet’s New Storytellers.” 2006. Pew Internet & American Life Project, 27 March 2007. < http://www.pewinternet.org/pdfs/PIP%20Bloggers%20Report%20July%2019%202006.pdf >.
    • Mairn, Chad. “Follow the St. Petersburg College Library as They Enter the Blogosphere.” Community and Junior College Libraries . 13.3 (2006).
    • Richardson, Will. 2004. “Blogging and RSS --The “What's It?&quot; and “How To&quot; of Powerful New Web Tools for Educators.” Multimedia & Internet@Schools. 11, no.1:10-13.
  • 26. Contact Information:
    • Chad Mairn, M.L.I.S.
    • St. Petersburg College
    • Email: [email_address]
    • Phone: 727.341.7181 Skype ID = cmairn
    • GoogleTalk = c hadmairn
    • Odeo WWW Voicemail: http://odeo.com/sendmeamessage/ChadMairn
    This presentation is available electronically at: http:// www.spcollege.edu/SPG/WSPCL/librarians/mairn /