Okay, so it's kind of odd to be blogging about blogging. Sort of like one of those movies like Being John Malkovich where the lines are blurred between story and reality within the plotline. But we'll see what happens.
Michael Stephens, Jenny Levine, and Jessa Crispin make up the panel.
Jessa Crispin, and admitted technophobe, who started blogging because she thought that she could do it better than her then-boyfriend's boring blog. Within two years it turned into a full-time job and an "in" into the publishing world.
And it seems that we assume these blog-masters (if that's a term) are more tech-savvy than we are, but it may not be true.
If you are a blogger, create a personal blogging mission statement: what and how you will blog about. You don't necessarily have to post it or make it public, but it helps you decide what the focus will be.
Jessa: Because of a lot of hate mail, she has seen blogs somewhat taken over by comments and managing/deleting inappropriate ones. Her site actually doesn't have comments enabled for this reason.
Michael: Find the 10 or so voices that speak to you and follow those blogs, don't try to read or follow everything. Use an aggregator to get the information easily through RSS feeds.
Jenny: Separate things out in folders of your aggregator so you can scan the feeds easily in a short period of time. Information overload is not a myth. It's okay - you don't have to read every single thing every single day.
Jessa: I don't actually read blogs...
How has it affected your industries?
Jessa: not necessarily a good impact - people blogging because of free books...
Jenny: I really trust a review on a library blog, and that librarians won't post a review just because they got a book for free. It's hard to make decisions unless you really keep up to date - and blogging makes that possible much more than print articles can.
Michael: I think I'm notorious for neglecting vendors. It's a different side of the profession that people need to know about.
Do you see library blogs replacing library websites?
No - it serves a different function - to share dynamic, changing information.
What is a site that is indispensable for you to keep up?
Any reason to use list-servs?
Yes, it's a way to find community if you can find the right one. The tools overlap - it doesn't have to be an either/or.
You can suck them into your aggregator.
On advice for someone who wants to start blogging but hasn't embraced it yet?
Best quotes from Jessa Crispin:
"MySpace scares me - because I just end up getting drunk and stalking ex-boyfriends."
"I almost feel like not everybody needs a blog."
Decide what you want to talk about. If you're passionate about it, it will be easy and it will be a good blog. If you have any inclination, try it. You can always stop.
In our prof. lives as librarians, it's important for us to know what is going on for our patrons. So he encourages students to try something (like blogging or second life, etc.) just to see what it is like, how it might relate to librarianship and libraries. That's valuable information to know/experience.