Posts tagged ‘blogosphere’

The Social Marketing Blogosphere Continues to Expand: Welcome Mike Newton-Ward

I am excited to announce the addition of a great social marketing voice to the blogosphere, Mike Newton-Ward at Social Marketing Panorama, where he hopes to offer a 360-view of social marketing.

My first encounter with Mike was when he graciously helped me with my graduate project this past Spring. Though we’ve only ‘met’ through phone, email and now blogging, he is a very knowledge, helpful and passionate voice for the social marketing field.

Mike outlines a few reasons why he entered the blogosphere:

  • Exchange ideas about social marketing
  • Extend the discussions from Georgetown’s social marketing list serv
  • Create community
  • Share resources, as well as his personal observations in the field

Mike’s addition to the blogosphere is a special treat for all of us as he invites us to:

to observe the world around you, listen to what people are saying, reflect on your experiences, and share them.”

Social marketing’s presence in the blogosphere continues to expand and gain traction. Join the metamorphosis. Come fly with us in this growing movement called social marketing.

For more social marketing-related blogs, my links page offers many more resources and listings!

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September 24, 2008 at 11:38 pm 2 comments

Blogger Outreach Series: Law Issues Part B, Privacy

Continuing in my blogger outreach series, this post will focus on law that addresses privacy in regard to bloggers and blog content.

hotoblog

Privacy: Currently, privacy is not included in the bill of rights, but as technology increases, it’s developing into quite the controversy. To protect yourself as a blogger and the subjects included in your posts, it is important to understand the law surrounding online privacy issues and the increasing issues involving privacy

There are 2 ways to approach privacy:

  1. Your privacy as a Blogger AND
  2. the privacy of the people involved in your blog’s content

To protect your privacy as a blogger, there are some different approaches with strengths and benefits. These include:

Blog Completely Anonymously

  • Create a Psuedo-name
  • Do not give away identifiers in the blog’s content
  • For COMPLETE anonymous blogging, try Invisiblog, Tor and Anonymizer. These are applications that help you create an anonymous blog where the creators and hosts of the blog won’t even have access to your information, can hide your IP address, and allows for anonymous editing of your blog.
  • Limit Your Audience
  • To avoid being found in search engines or in Google, install a ‘Robots Text File Generator’ into your blog’s architecture.
  • Set-up an alternative email address.
  • Update from a public computer.

Pros/Cons: Privacy protected. But, if you desire more traffic, hits or views, this could limit you. And, you don’t get credit for your hard work and time into up-keeping your blog.

Blog Anonymously, but control who knows who you are

  • Create an alias…but with talking with friends, family, co-workers, or online contacts, feel free to share that it is your blog. But, you don’t have to put your name on the blog. This allows you to control who can identify the blog as yours, and allows you to control to some degree who knows you have a blog.
  • This is the option this blog SocialButterfly has chosen for a variety of reasons. Eventually, I will more than likely reveal my true identify, but in the meantime, I am collecting feedback on what employers, friends, colleagues think of someone wearing a ‘blogger’ hat.

Pros/Cons: Allows you to get feedback on what others think of your blog and protects your privacy to some degree meaning that random unique visitors can’t identify you without first contacting you and YOU deciding to disclose your identity to them based on your interactions with them.

Blog Openly, but control the type of information visible

  • Put a picture of yourself on the home page, along with a concise bio about your background and why you are blogging.
  • Consider the blog as a way to extend your ‘personal brand.’ So, your communications about yourself need to help build and add credibility to your blog.
  • Allows creator to develop long-term personal connections and relationships with readers.

Pros/Cons: This allows you take full advantage of social media at its best. As a small business owner, it allows to you communicate with possible consumers and to extend your business’ message and purpose and connects consumers to you on a more personal level. Cons include that you are personally identifiable on the web. Anyone can find your blog, know its yours, and may judge you on your blog before meeting you or making a personal connection with you. This could also affect potential employers or current employers.

Blog Completely Openly

  • This is an open, anything goes approach to blogging.

Pros/Cons: Your belief in free speech is rightly communicated and your views are open, honest and shared. However, you may have to provide evidence and reasons why you say what you say. Basically, be prepared to back yourself up. Cons could include potential employers shying away from you, or wanting to fire you because of your blog.

Some more points to remember as a blogger are found here including laws on political speech, unionizing, whistleblowing, blogging when you work for the government, and legal off-duty activities. Blogging about work activities when you work for the government is actually protected under the First Amendment according to the Electronic Frontier Foundation.

Lessons from Privacy for people involved in the blog’s content:

  • If you plan on posting images, videos, or audio of subjects you interview or interact with, gain their consent before posting this material – especially if the material contains minors.
  • Get parental consent if the content relates to minors, and blur the minors face or voice if possible since laws pertaining to minors are much more strict.
  • If you shoot film or take photographs, to be safe, make sure it is done on public property unless you have the participants consent. This will avoid trespassing and invasion of privacy issues.

As blogging increases, it is important to note that many people have different feelings about anonymous-related blogging and the laws continue to change as the technology matures. And as a disclaimer, I reiterate, I am not a lawyer.

For more information on electronic privacy issues, see EPIC, the electronic privacy information center.

**If you are an expert in this area, please contact me as I’d be curious on your thoughts and feedback on this post. Thanks! **

March 15, 2008 at 3:05 am Leave a comment

Blogger Outreach Series 1: Regulation, in reference to government blogging

hotoblog

On my Twitter feed, I recently asked the question:

What are people’s experience with their clients and organizations about incorporating blogs and/or blogger outreach to their interactive marketing plans?

I ask this because as social media knowledge expands, more organizations are looking at the concept of blogging, including government agencies. Thus, this next series of posts will revolve around questions organizations must ask themselves when wrestling with the ‘blogging dilemma.’ Or, to change the outlook and attitude, the blogging opportunity.

**********************************

Question 1: To blog, or not to blog, that is the question.

The first response I usually receive when discussing blogging is a question relating to regulation. Thus, to start-off this series, this post will focus on regulation. Not all organizations desire to blog. In fact, many fear blogging because of a popular notion that it is an unregulated mode of communications…a public relations disaster waiting to unfold. These fears inspire numerous questions.

1. What if someone leaves a bad comment?
2. What if the blogosphere doesn’t approve or doesn’t view us as transparent?
3. How will we manage this logistical mess?
4. How do we even evaluate if we make any progress?
5. What can a blog even achieve?
6. What is a blog?
7. What will a blog cost us?
8. How do we control a blog?

and the list continues. These questions cover a lot of topics. In my experience, this concept of regulation most often appears with government clients. Here is a common statement:

We can’t do blogging. It’s unregulated and you have no idea what people will say or how they’ll say it. We are a government agency, and we can’t take that sort of risk.”

This fear is understandable. For those not infiltrated in the blog arena, it appears messy – and at times, honestly, it is. However, the blogosphere doesn’t have to be completely viewed as ‘unregulated.’

Here are two examples on how organizations have approached blogging:

1. Regulate Blog Access. One organization I’m working with loves the idea of blogs, so much…(possibly a bit too much in my opinion…but hey, it’s also going to be a trial and error basis)…that their site will have 5-8 blogs. Logistically, this will be interesting. But in theory, the idea is to regulate who has blog access. The site will be set-up as an online community, so only members will see all the topical blogs. Whereas, the public will only see the one main blog. This way we can regulate what non-members have access to.

2. Trial and Error. One consulting client I worked with loved the idea of a blog, but wasn’t sold on having the blog content being created and written by the organization. They wanted to use a blog as an outreach to their non-profit’s community as another tool of engagement. So, they started the blog, regulate it, but let their community members write the content by having the blog’s perspective be: Share Your Story. So, those wrestling with the non-profit’s illness shared their stories, could build online community and support one another.

  • Event blogging
  • Live Blogging
  • Topical Blogging

Now, if you are working with a federal or state agency, the notion of blogging ruffles some feathers. Here is a critical case to make: blogging has been done. and can be done. Here eare some helpful sites to note:

1. Public Officials’ Blogs. Just do a quick environmental scan of the presidential candidates’ websites! This site even offers a full listing of current blogs held by public officials across the United States.

2. Increasing Government Agencies’ Blogs. Now the list may be small, especially when considering just how many agencies exist, but it’s a starting point.

3. Government Blog Resource. A great outline of what blogs are, issues to consider, blog statistics, viewpoints, etc…a great resource!

4. Research Study.The Blogging Revolution: Government in the Age of Web 2.0,” a report by the IBM Center for the Business of Government which lists congressional, state, and local blogs.

(pic from http://www.masternewmedia.org)

March 3, 2008 at 3:24 am 1 comment


Meet Alexandra Rampy, aka SocialButterfly

I am a social marketing believer, blogger, practitioner, researcher and enthusiast. This site highlights the growing movement of social marketing. Learn more about social marketing and how to be your own socialbutterfly--> here.

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