Last Wednesday (March 3, 2010) the Times Union and St. Rose sponsored, what can best be called a Q & A, Media 2010: How Blogs Shape the New Conversation. As a new blogger, I found all the information very useful. I’ve always been one to learn as much as I can about a certain topic, or an interest, to make sure I know what I’m doing. I’m a proverbial sponge.
I attended the conference with hopes that I’d learn something, and I certainly did. I learned that conventional pad and paper is more obsolete than bringing a laptop to a “class.” I guess I’m still a student of the 20th Century. Regardless, the information was quite useful for me.
The session began with Times Union blogger Steve Barnes introducing the panel of experts that would help us understand what it is like to blog, how journalism affects blogging, and some of the negatives of the process. I came prepared with a list of questions that I eliminated shortly after the introduction and opening remarks, because it seemed that they knew what I’d ask before I even opened my mouth. I love it when that happens!
The panelists were primarily from the Times Union, Steve Barnes – “Table Hopping”, Kristi Gustafson – “On The Edge”, Rob Madeo – “Man of a Certain Age”, but Greg Dahlmann, the co-founder of All Over Albany, and Gina Luttrell – Instructor, Public Relations and Advertising, The College of Saint Rose were also on the panel. Everyone had something to contribute to the conversation, and were quite honest about their experiences as bloggers.
I was quite appreciative that the panelists would defer to other bloggers in the audience to assist with answers, as they may have been more experienced in areas in which they were less familiar. For me, personally, the best information came from a fellow new blogger, Daniel B. who writes FUSSYlittleBlog. He had some great ideas to get the word out about advertising the blog to the public to get more traffic. Many of the bloggers on the panel were not as interested in the stats as I was, so the information Dan gave was really good.
Did I learn anything? Absolutely! Kristi Gustafson suggested to put an RSS feed on my blog to give it more publicity. All of the bloggers agreed on fresh material, which may be my biggest challenge, as well as blogging every day. As I think about it, I am more likely to read a blog when the writer has something new to say on a daily basis. So, it makes perfect sense.
So, what am I going to take from the conversation? I am going to make a concerted effort in posting something new every day. I have to say that finding new and fresh topics may be a challenge, but I’m sure that I will find something from my personal life, the news, other blogs, to get some inspiration.
I’m quite excited for the new experience. I do hope that Michael Huber from the Times Union continues the series to delve deeper into some of the topics that were touched on. I’d love to hear more about how people try to keep their blog comments separate from their personal lives. I’m not big on the revenue stream, as I enjoy blogging as a “hobby” now, but maybe in the future. Why can’t I gain a little something from giving to others? It could happen!
So, thank you to the panelists for giving us some great information, those audience members who contributed to the conversation, and Michael Huber for organizing the session. I look forward to follow-up opportunities.