Everything you wanted to know about blogs Dr Sarah Pedersen
Structure <ul><li>What’s a blog? </li></ul><ul><li>Who blogs? </li></ul><ul><li>Why blog? </li></ul><ul><li>Librarians blo...
What is a blog? <ul><li>Web log </li></ul><ul><li>Brief, dated posts collected on one webpage </li></ul><ul><li>Chronologi...
Early blogs <ul><li>Link-driven sites </li></ul><ul><li>Filtering the Internet for their readers </li></ul><ul><li>Respond...
Example of filter blog entry <ul><li>The New York Times  publishes an article entitled &quot; A </li></ul><ul><li>Startlin...
1999 and arrival of Blogger <ul><li>‘ Build-your-own-weblog’ tools </li></ul><ul><li>Ease of use </li></ul><ul><li>Move to...
What are journal blogs? <ul><li>Less links </li></ul><ul><li>Smaller readership </li></ul><ul><li>More of a diary </li></u...
Example of a journal blog entry <ul><li>I see now that using &quot;exciting&quot; and &quot;throwing up&quot; in the same ...
BUT <ul><li>High proportion of blogs are abandoned </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Sifry (August 2005) 45% </li></ul></ul><ul><li>So...
Blog furniture <ul><li>Readers’ comments </li></ul><ul><li>Data monitoring </li></ul><ul><li>The blog roll </li></ul><ul><...
Blogging as the Fifth Estate? <ul><li>No longer just link logs, include longer articles </li></ul><ul><li>Now breaking sto...
Bloggers are not traditional journalists <ul><li>Bloggers are not objective </li></ul><ul><li>Bloggers are unpaid: lack th...
Who are the bloggers? <ul><li>Current or recent students (?) </li></ul><ul><li>English speaking and primarily US (?) </li>...
Is the blogosphere sexist? <ul><li>Most influential bloggers are American males </li></ul><ul><li>Popularity is measured i...
Why is there an imbalance? <ul><li>Men more likely to author blogs about politics and technology </li></ul><ul><li>More li...
Why blog? <ul><li>Schiano et al:  </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Diaries </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Newsletter </li></ul></ul><ul><...
A financial motivation <ul><li>Research into motivations has previously focused on intangible rewards </li></ul><ul><ul><l...
Entering the blogosphere: finding blogs <ul><li>Search engines that search only blog content </li></ul><ul><li>Also offer ...
Information management blogs <ul><li>Blogs can filter information for you </li></ul><ul><li>They can offer information to ...
Examples <ul><li>http://www.aurochs.org/aurlog/ </li></ul><ul><li>http://annoyedlibrarian.blogspot.com/ </li></ul><ul><li>...
Setting up your own blog <ul><li>Social networks; blogging plus other community features  </li></ul><ul><ul><li>MSN Spaces...
Further reading <ul><li>Rebecca Blood. Weblogs: a history and perspective.  Rebecca’s Pocket  [weblog], 7 September 2000. ...
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GI Conference 07 Blogs Workshop

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GI Conference 07 Blogs Workshop

  1. 1. Everything you wanted to know about blogs Dr Sarah Pedersen
  2. 2. Structure <ul><li>What’s a blog? </li></ul><ul><li>Who blogs? </li></ul><ul><li>Why blog? </li></ul><ul><li>Librarians blog </li></ul><ul><li>You blog </li></ul>
  3. 3. What is a blog? <ul><li>Web log </li></ul><ul><li>Brief, dated posts collected on one webpage </li></ul><ul><li>Chronologically ordered </li></ul><ul><li>Self-archives by date </li></ul><ul><li>Majority with the capacity </li></ul><ul><li>for readers to leave comments </li></ul>
  4. 4. Early blogs <ul><li>Link-driven sites </li></ul><ul><li>Filtering the Internet for their readers </li></ul><ul><li>Responding to, not creating, the news </li></ul><ul><li>Web enthusiasts – needed programming skills </li></ul>
  5. 5. Example of filter blog entry <ul><li>The New York Times publishes an article entitled &quot; A </li></ul><ul><li>Startling New Lesson in the Power of Imagery &quot; with the </li></ul><ul><li>following opening paragraph: </li></ul><ul><li>‘ They're callous and feeble cartoons, cooked up as a </li></ul><ul><li>provocation by a conservative newspaper exploiting the </li></ul><ul><li>general Muslim prohibition on images of the Prophet </li></ul><ul><li>Muhammad to score cheap points about freedom of </li></ul><ul><li>expression.’ </li></ul><ul><li>  Readers of the Times will have to take the writer's word for it </li></ul><ul><li>since they've never seen the images themselves.  But you have </li></ul><ul><li>admire the audacity of the way this whole episode is being </li></ul><ul><li>framed here.  &quot;Cooked up,&quot; &quot;provocation,&quot; &quot;exploiting,&quot; &quot;cheap </li></ul><ul><li>points.&quot;  And that's just the first sentence!  </li></ul>
  6. 6. 1999 and arrival of Blogger <ul><li>‘ Build-your-own-weblog’ tools </li></ul><ul><li>Ease of use </li></ul><ul><li>Move to journal blogs </li></ul><ul><li>Technorati – over 70 million blogs </li></ul>
  7. 7. What are journal blogs? <ul><li>Less links </li></ul><ul><li>Smaller readership </li></ul><ul><li>More of a diary </li></ul><ul><li>Can be personal or linked to work </li></ul><ul><li>http://www.neenaw.co.uk </li></ul><ul><li>http://finslippy.typepad.com </li></ul>
  8. 8. Example of a journal blog entry <ul><li>I see now that using &quot;exciting&quot; and &quot;throwing up&quot; in the same sentence has led many to the conclusion that I'm pregnant. This isn't the case. However, I know from past experience that you probably still think I'm pregnant. People! If I had been pregnant all the times you thought I was we would have infants stacked up like firewood around here... </li></ul>
  9. 9. BUT <ul><li>High proportion of blogs are abandoned </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Sifry (August 2005) 45% </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Some are never used – test blogs </li></ul><ul><li>Others are fake or spam </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Sifry (February 2006) 9% </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>http://www.sifry.com </li></ul></ul>
  10. 10. Blog furniture <ul><li>Readers’ comments </li></ul><ul><li>Data monitoring </li></ul><ul><li>The blog roll </li></ul><ul><li>Advertising </li></ul><ul><li>Blog ring links </li></ul><ul><li>http://boogaj.typepad.com/knitting_blogs/ </li></ul><ul><li>http://www.xanga.com/groups/ </li></ul><ul><li>RSS feed – ‘syndicates’ the content and allows it to be read in a separate reader called an aggregator </li></ul>
  11. 11. Blogging as the Fifth Estate? <ul><li>No longer just link logs, include longer articles </li></ul><ul><li>Now breaking stories, ie Doug McGill in ’The McGill Report’ breaking the story of genocide in Ethiopia in Dec 2003 </li></ul><ul><li>Dan Gillmor: ’citizen journalists’ </li></ul><ul><li>Grassroots journalists taking news into their own hands </li></ul><ul><li>Centre for Citizen Media ( http:// citmedia.org ) </li></ul><ul><li>Citizen journalism encourages participation in current events by an educated populace </li></ul><ul><li>Bloggers can work together across the world and perfect the final product </li></ul>
  12. 12. Bloggers are not traditional journalists <ul><li>Bloggers are not objective </li></ul><ul><li>Bloggers are unpaid: lack the time/commitment to undertake less glamorous aspects of journalism </li></ul><ul><li>Rarely speak directly to witnesses </li></ul><ul><li>Blogging as a conversation rather than a lecture </li></ul><ul><li>Fifth estate?: overseeing the work of journalists </li></ul>
  13. 13. Who are the bloggers? <ul><li>Current or recent students (?) </li></ul><ul><li>English speaking and primarily US (?) </li></ul><ul><li>Roughly half female, half (or more) young people </li></ul>
  14. 14. Is the blogosphere sexist? <ul><li>Most influential bloggers are American males </li></ul><ul><li>Popularity is measured in links (ie by Technorati) </li></ul><ul><li>Having more links means you are higher in the rankings </li></ul><ul><li>Page-ranking algorithms give greater weight to links from blogs that are themselves highly ranke d </li></ul><ul><li>Men’s postings receive more comments than women’s (Ratcliff, 2006) </li></ul><ul><li>Mainstream media gives more attention to male bloggers (Herring et al, 2004; Pedersen & Macafee, 2006) </li></ul><ul><li>Rise of BlogHer http://www.blogher.org/ </li></ul>
  15. 15. Why is there an imbalance? <ul><li>Men more likely to author blogs about politics and technology </li></ul><ul><li>More likely to blog about external events rather than personal ones? </li></ul><ul><li>More likely to aggressively market their blogs </li></ul><ul><li>Women’s blogs make up only 15% of blogrolls (Henning, 2003) </li></ul><ul><li>Women link to both men and women, men link to men (Pedersen & Macafee, 2005) </li></ul>
  16. 16. Why blog? <ul><li>Schiano et al: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Diaries </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Newsletter </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Photo album </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Travelogue </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Opinion column </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>News digests </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Forum for work </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Pedersen – women gain safe support and validation from blogging </li></ul>
  17. 17. A financial motivation <ul><li>Research into motivations has previously focused on intangible rewards </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Influencing public opinion; sharing information; creativity </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Large number of respondents hoped their blog would generate income </li></ul><ul><li>Attract new clients to a business </li></ul><ul><li>New work </li></ul><ul><li>Publishing opportunities </li></ul><ul><li>‘ Professional’ bloggers </li></ul><ul><li>Carrying advertising </li></ul>
  18. 18. Entering the blogosphere: finding blogs <ul><li>Search engines that search only blog content </li></ul><ul><li>Also offer lists of popular searches, top blogs, etc </li></ul><ul><li>Blogpulse http://www.blogpulse.com/index.html </li></ul><ul><li>Bloglines http:// www.bloglines.com/ </li></ul><ul><li>Technorati http://www.technorati.com/ </li></ul><ul><li>The Truth Laid bear http://truthlaidbear.com/ </li></ul>
  19. 19. Information management blogs <ul><li>Blogs can filter information for you </li></ul><ul><li>They can offer information to your users </li></ul><ul><li>Communicate with staff </li></ul>
  20. 20. Examples <ul><li>http://www.aurochs.org/aurlog/ </li></ul><ul><li>http://annoyedlibrarian.blogspot.com/ </li></ul><ul><li>http://www.libraryman.com/blog/ </li></ul><ul><li>http://northmetrotechlibraryatacworth.blogspot.com/ </li></ul><ul><li>http://lawprofessors.typepad.com/law_librarian_blog/ </li></ul>
  21. 21. Setting up your own blog <ul><li>Social networks; blogging plus other community features </li></ul><ul><ul><li>MSN Spaces </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Bebo </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>LiveJournal </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Cheap and popular - Blogger </li></ul><ul><li>Typepad – paid-for service </li></ul><ul><li>More powerful, but more demanding : </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Movable Type </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>WordPress </li></ul></ul>
  22. 22. Further reading <ul><li>Rebecca Blood. Weblogs: a history and perspective. Rebecca’s Pocket [weblog], 7 September 2000. http:// www.rebeccablood.net/essays/weblog_history.html . </li></ul><ul><li>Susan C Herring, Lois Ann Scheidt, Sabrina Bonus and Elijah Wright, Bridging the gap: A genre analysis of weblogs. In: Proceedings of the 37th Hawai'i International Conference on System Sciences http://www.blogninja.com/DDGDD04.doc . </li></ul><ul><li>Diane J Schiano, Bonnie A Nardi, Michelle Gumbrecht and Luke Swartz. Blogging by the rest of us. http://home.comcast.net/~diane.schiano/CHI04.Blog.pdf . </li></ul><ul><li>Sarah Pedersen and Caroline Macafee, ‘Gender Differences in British Blogging’, Journal of Computer-Mediated Communication, 12 (4), July 2007. http://jcmc.indiana.edu/vol12/issue4/pedersen.html </li></ul>

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