How to blog safely
It's as easy as falling off a (b)log
A blog? What's that?
All the cool kids have one and now I do too. Yes, I've started my own blog. It's called Bad Language and it's about writing in business. I figure the best way to learn how to blog was to do it and you can start your own free blog in a few minutes using MSN Spaces.
A blog is a website with regular news or diary-like posts. While you can read a blog online many people use a program called an RSS reader which will display new entries from selected sites as they appear.
I hope that my blog might be a good advert for my writing business and might generate some good karma by helping people to write better. Some people even make a living by blogging. They do this by including advertisements on their site, almost like online magazines. Since the main advert of my blog is my own site I don't want to confuse the message by including adverts from other people.
Many businesses use blogs as an adjunct to PR (see, for example, Scobleizer by Microsoft's Robert Scoble, arguably the world's best-known corporate blogger). It's a more human way for a company to talk to customers. They are also a useful way of building a relationship with customers particularly in building user communities. They can also be used as a way of providing technical support information.
Unlike a web site or a press release, blogs are generally personal. The idea of blogging began with online diary and that is still the most popular use today. This confessional style is part of their charm.
Blogs are part of a wider community called the 'blogosphere.' Connections between different blogs help people find interesting new sites and avoid bad ones. A good place to start looking for blogs is Technorati. It's also a good place to find out what bloggers are saying about your business.
Like anything new on the internet, there are risks to blogging:
However, I don't think there's much risk that my blog will turn into a novel but I am taking time to learn how blogging works, to write some decent stuff, studying other blogs to see how experts do it and paying attention to security. This seems like a reasonable approach.