Introduction to blogs and blogging

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An introduction to blogs and blogging

An introduction to blogs and blogging

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  • 1. Introduction to blogs & blogging Sanjana Hattotuwa
  • 2. Topics covered
    • What is a blog?
    • How are blogs used?
    • Understanding the anatomy of a blog
    • Starting your own blog
    • Finding and reading other blogs
    • Other resources
  • 3. A blog is…
    • Shortened form of the phrase “Web log”
    • Like a diary or journal
    • A website that can be easily updated by posting short items, with little or no knowledge of programming.
    • Blogs are often ordered by date and topic, with newest items at the top.
    • Entries are often archived
  • 4.  
  • 5. Blog topics include
    • News and Journalism
    • Education
    • Analysis & Opinion
    • Humour
    • Research
    • “ Annotated Bookmarks” - users who find websites and tag them for others with short descriptions
    • Technology
    • Peace
    • And much more !
  • 6. Examples Politics Individual Opinions www.moju.lk www.indi.ca
  • 7. Examples www.kottu.org www. ard-acp.com/blog News Anti-Corruption Blog
  • 8. Examples www.lirneasia.net www.voicesofpeace.lk Organisational blog Peace project blog
  • 9. Examples tvradiosrilanka.blogspot.com colombopost.blogspot.com Online activist blog Peace project blog
  • 10. What makes a blog a blog?
  • 11. Some typical blog features
    • Comments on posts (you can post responses to the blog)
    • Feeds (others can subscribe to your blog and read it at leisure)
    • Trackbacks (a way through which you are alerted when others link to your posts)
    • Categories
    • Site search
    • Archives
    • Blogroll (a list of other blogs you find interesting or deal with similar issues)
  • 12. Anatomy of a post Title Post Author Comments Categories Links
  • 13. Who blogs in Sri Lanka?
    • English speaking, under 35, Western province
    • Few journalists
    • Youth from the diaspora
    • Young researchers & thinkers
    • Many blog from broadband connections at work
    • Many are well educated (tertiary)
    • More men than women, though women are very articulate and write on a broader range of issues
  • 14. Who blogs in Sri Lanka?
    • Almost no blogs in purely Sinhala and Tamil
    • Lack of standardised fonts in Sinhala impedes growth of blogs
    • However, blogs are growing in number
    • Journalists are catching up
    • Citizens still need to be made more aware of the potential of blogs for good governance, democracy and peacebuilding
  • 15. Who blogs globally?
    • Over 34 million blogs worldwide
    • The “blogosphere” doubles in size every 6 months or so
    • A new blog is created nearly every second !
    • Over 55% of blogs are active, and 13% of blogs updated weekly
    • Blogs worldwide double approximate every 6 months
  • 16.  
  • 17. Newspaper references to blogging
  • 18. The language of blogs
  • 19. Creating your own blog
  • 20. Creating your own blog
  • 21. Choose a name
  • 22. Choose a template
  • 23. Write something !
  • 24. Our first blog !
  • 25. Reading other blogs
    • You can go directly to the website of the blog - http://ict4peace.wordpress.com
    • You can read the subject lines and a short summary of recent posts in an RSS Reader , which is much more efficient.
  • 26. What is RSS?
    • Really Simple Syndication – A lightweight format for distributing news headlines and other content on the Web
    • It is an alternative means of accessing the vast amount of information that now exists on the world wide web. Instead of the user browsing websites for information of interest, the information is sent directly to the user
  • 27. What is an RSS Reader?
    • Allows you to read blog content offline
    • Like a newspaper subscription - brings in new blog content to your PC without you having to visit lots of blogs individually
    • Allows you to read content offline, your RSS Reader runs on your local hard drive. There are online RSS Readers as well.
  • 28. My choice - RSSOwl
  • 29. Why?
    • Free & runs on Windows, Mac OS X and Linux
    • Handles multiple languages
    • Very user friendly
    • Powerful
    • Download it from http://www.rssowl.org
  • 30. Adding a blog feed
    • As simple as tying in the blog’s URL into RSSOwl
  • 31. Adding a blog feed Feeds Headlines Summary
  • 32. Searching blogs (Technorati)
  • 33. Searching blogs (Google)
  • 34. Searching blogs (Yahoo!)
  • 35. Be careful - Blog safely
    • Guides for blogging on sensitive issues are available on the internet
    • Be careful when blogging about sensitive issues
    • Governments have been known to imprison bloggers or subject them to harassment (such as in China)
    • Make sure your blog is set up to support the issues you want to write about
  • 36. Electronic Frontier Foundation: http://www.eff.org/Privacy/Anonymity/blog-anonymously.php
  • 37. Reporters Without Borders: http://www.rsf.org/rubrique.php3?id_rubrique=542
  • 38. Groundview.lk
    • First citizens journalism blog in Sri Lanka
    • Perspectives from citizens and provincial journalists in one place
    • Available in Sinhala, Tamil and English
    • Local content for local communities
    • Local content for global audience
    • Alternative perspectives on war, peace, democracy, governance and reconciliation
  • 39. To be launched in November 2006
  • 40. VOR Radio http://radio.voicesofpeace.lk
    • First internet radio station by a CSO for CSO / NGO sector
    • Tri-lingual content available as podcasts
    • Episodes can be listened to online or downloaded and listened to on portable MP3 players
    • Users can link to content from their blogs and leave feedback
    • New content can be seen on RSS Readers
    • Features content from grassroots & community media radio stations, archives radio productions aired in the past, and promotes voices in support of peace and reconciliation in Sri Lanka
  • 41. VOR Radio http://radio.voicesofpeace.lk
  • 42. Read more, learn more
    • Blogging Intros
      • http://www.unc.edu/~zuiker/blogging101/
      • http://www.technorati.com/help/blogging101.html
      • http://www.microsoft.com/windows/ie/community/columns/blogging.mspx
    • Tips
      • http://weblogs.about.com/od/blogtipsandideas/
    • Free blogging sites
      • http://wordpress.com/
      • http://www.blogger.com/home
  • 43. Thank you ! Sanjana Hattotuwa Senior Researcher, Centre for Policy Alternatives Head, ICT for Peacebuilding, InfoShare http://sanjanah.googlepages.com http://ict4peace.wordpress.com