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  1. 1. Vital Habits: Community Weblogs in Action Lou Rutigliano PhD Student UT-Austin School of Journalism
  2. 2. Spectators or Participants? Walter Lippmann -Public Affairs Too Complex for Public -Experts Must Analyze it For Citizens John Dewey -Passive Audience = Weak Democracy -Role of Press to Provide Public Forum
  3. 3. Dewey’s Descendents: Community Weblogs Seek Broad Public Participation Encourage Conversation and Interaction Give Audience Active Role Citizen-Driven not Institution-Driven
  4. 4. Four Factors to Monitor • Contributors • Interactivity • Relationship to Institutions • Level of Control
  5. 5. Community Weblog Evaluation Lecture Conversation Contributors Few Many Interactivity Low High Institutions High Presence Low Presence Control High Low
  6. 6. Case Study:
  7. 7. Event Coverage: Unofficial SXSW -high member interest -little information available -informal -varied, unpredictable
  8. 8. Results: 1) Self-Generated Coverage
  9. 9. Results: 2) Members Build on Posts
  10. 10. Results: 3) Offline & Online Interaction
  11. 11. Results: 4) Central Control Critical
  12. 12. Conclusions -Untraditional content for an untraditional medium -Overlap between online and offline worlds -Media as service rather than product -Centralization: a self-fulfilling prophecy