Monday, 7 January 2008

The seven deadly sins of blogging!!

Clearswift produced a guide to the 7 Deadly Sins of Blogging. The full document can be read here, but I've summarised the main points below for those too lazy to click a link and read the additional information.

1st Deadly Sin Thinking you’re only talking to friends
The Golden Rule of blogging: never say anything on a blog that you wouldn’t happily say in public, that you can’t substantiate or that the organization would not permit. If in doubt: take it out!
2nd Deadly Sin Thinking your blog is personal, not an organizational matter
If you’re publishing a personal blog, make it clear on your home page that the views expressed in it are your own (and don’t mention your organization).
Whether personal or corporate, here are some of the big no-nos of blogging:
Sharing confidential information
Sharing business plans
Engaging in controversial speech
Sharing copyright-protected material
Sharing illegal or distasteful material

3rd Deadly Sin Linking to inappropriate material
It’s not just what you say in your blog, it’s what you link to. Linking to illegal material or inappropriate websites, videos or images is probably a breach of your policy – check it out if you’re unsure.

4th Deadly Sin Thinking you can erase mistakes
You can’t. Once you’ve published a blog entry, it’s out there for all to copy, share, link to and discuss. Of course, you can remove a post (and you should if you have any doubts), but you never know who has already copied it, distributed it or put it in their own blog.

5th Deadly Sin Ignoring comments to your blog entries
Your own blog entries may be completely responsible, but that doesn’t mean the people who post comments will be. Most bloggers experience unpleasant, inappropriate comments to their posts at some time. This can include racial or sexual abuse, harassment, personal attacks and links to pornography or illegal material.
You are responsible for all comments posted on your blog. Make sure you regularly monitor all comments, remove offensive or illegal ones, block irresponsible contributors and report any serious incident.
And of course, when you comment on other people’s blogs, the same rules of professionalism and security apply as they would on your own blog.

6th Deadly Sin Devouring resources
Simple text-based blogs are generally resource-friendly. But when you start to share recorded webcams, presentations, music, video and multimedia files, you may be eating valuable bandwidth, slowing down the network and using up storage space.

7th Deadly Sin Leaving yourself open to virus attack
A new generation of computer viruses, worms, Trojans and ‘malware’ (malicious computer code) has risen up to exploit the opportunities presented by blogging and other Web 2.0 services.

(With thanks to Duncan MacLeod for sourcing this information.

Monday, 26 November 2007


Next weeks class (3rd December 2007) there will be an assessment.

This assessment will test your ability to search for and evaluate blogs.

Please ensure you have gone over the exercises prior to the class.

Good luck!!!!

Monday, 19 November 2007

Historic Interviews

Class Exercise
Interview a historical figure

Blogs allow people to stretch their imagination. Some people are blogging with information from writers like Henry David Thoreau, Walt Whitman, and famously Samuel Pepys. In a different style, Frederick Douglass’ blog is written as if the American abolitionist, editor, orator, author, statesman, reformer and escaped slave was still alive and commenting on modern events.

Your task will be to delve into history and investigate a famous person’s life.

No swearing or other inappropriate/immature postings. These posts are available to students under 16 years old.
Your interview must be relevant and the answers written in the ‘voice’ of the interviewee.
It would be easier if you found information first, and then based your questions around the information that you have
Handouts: these instructions.

Task Planning
In a first-come-first-served basis, agree a figure from your home country’s past to interview.
They must be a real person, and have died before 1950. They must have been born in your home country (e.g. Scotland, England, Wales, Poland).
Your Tutor will record this, as everyone will be investigating someone different.
As this is an interview, and not just a series of bland historical questions, get as much information to substantiate the interview answers as possible. Making up an answer without any facts to back it up is just lying, and will not be tolerated.
Make the article as interesting as possible, adding pictures too.
This must be written as if a magazine interview – questions in italics, and answers in normal case. All must be in proper English, and not some made-up text ‘speak’ or gibberish. The aim is to be able to communicate with the majority of readers, and not just some mobile phone users.
Once you have completed the interview, add a second post with a short biography of the person, and a bibliography showing where you got the information.

As ever, this is a professional blog, so nothing illegal or immoral.

Blog Your Own Adventure

Comments on the Haunted House Adventure:-

Just been through the blogs in your class for the Bloggers Roundup, and noticed the following problems:'t link to the next post, just to the blog. illustration of the ending.'t link to the next post, just to the blog.Also, no written choices, just numbers.
same at:
I think the link here is in the wrong place:

Many thanks to Duncan

Please check and correct

Monday, 29 October 2007

Monday 29th October 2007

Firstly, my apologies for not being available to take the class today.

In today's class I would like you to firstly look at the "Tracking Visitors" presentation. Then set up the tracking for your blog, following the instructions in the presentation. Once complete you will be able to track the usage of your blog i.e. where in the world visitors are viewing from. This could be an opportunity to offer a prize for the blog with the most distant visitor.

I would also like you to review your own blog:-

  • is it interesting?
  • does it have many posts?
  • have you replied to any posts?
  • would you visit a blog like this?
  • If not why not?

One you have reviewed your blog start to make the changes required to make visitors...visit!!

I would also like to see the corrections previously requested completed.

Thank you


Monday, 15 October 2007


It is disapointing to note that a number of students did not bother to do the Do's & Don'ts from last week. It is an even bigger disapointment to note that a similar number of you chose not to bother about the Radio 1 write up that was to be done before the class on the 15th October.


Failure to produce the work required may result in you failling this unit!!

Radio 1

I enjoyed the flash back to the way it was. This was my era! NOT!!I was never a great radio fan but to think we only had BBC Home, Light and the 3rd Programme. How did we survive! The stuffy BBC obviously did not appreciate the impact of the 60s and chose to ignore it whilst others saw the gap in the market and jumped right in. I remember Radio Caroline (28/3/64)and a young Tony Blackburn but I cannot remember which record of the Rolling Stones was played first - the programme did not give a hint.

The BBC then seemed to sulk and ban these commercial radio stations but they managed to survive using European Funding.

The BBC eventually got their act together and Radio 1 was born on the 30 September 1967. Tony Blackburn was poached from Radio Caroline and opened the show with "Flowers in the Rain". It really annoyed me that I could not remember who sang it but after the class one of my colleagues was able to tell me that it was "The Move".


Since then Radio 1 has gone from strength to strength. According to Piers Bradford and Will Kinder, producers/managers, this is because they have a specific audience and they cater for it. Their audience is in the 15 - 24 bracket and many of their staff fall into the same age bracket which works well.

The producer is really a manager who is responsible for bringing everything together - timings, music, guest bookings, specialist shows, documentaries etc. They are responsible for defining and targeting their chosen audience.

Andy Parfitt is in overall charge of Radio 1.


These are probably the most important "face" of Radio 1. The shows go out to the whole country and with this in mind, BBC have employed DJs with regional accents to appeal to all areas eg Chris Moyles (Leeds) in the morning.

Other DJs specialise in music for a wider audience (usually at night) eg Zane Lowe.

Each show has its own team who plan the show in conjunction with the DJ. As the DVD was shot in the afternoon, Chris Moyles' team had disappeared!

Andy Parfitt says they are allowed more freedom of speech than DJs on commercial radios but they have to fit in with the ethos of the station. He says radio is a team game and everyone is a good team player.


It was interesting to hear about Surita Jagpal's job - listening to the music brought in every Tuesday by the Pluggers from the record companies. I think it might be boring after a while. Radio 1 rate the music

A 25/35 plays a week
B 10/20 plays a week
C 5 plays a week

The board meeting takes place once a week. Each producer is allowed to pick one record he wants to play and then the resta are decided by the board. Alex Donnelly - Head of Music - says that people often ask him if this is the job he has always dreamed of. I think there is more to it than just listening to music!NEWBEATRadio 1 also has its news and current affairs program. Rod McKenzie, the Editor, says that they treat the news differently because of their target audience - students, plumbers, secretaries etc. There is a daily Production Meeting and after discussion, stories are allocated to reporters like Andy Brown who will have to go out and meet the people and get their views (including the noise factor on the streets). He then has to come back to the office to edit his written and audio work in time for newsreader Georgina Bowman to broadcast Newsbeat. A lot of planning goes into this as reporters can be as far afield as Los Angeles, Ibiza, Aberdeen.


These people are responsible for keeping Radio 1 in the audience eye. Julian Payne is in overall charge of this. He will arrange for adverts to go into media that the target audience will read to advertise special events such as summer in Ibiza. Radio 1 hosts this every summer and this year they used the opportunity to introduce 2 new Radio 1 DJs and get them into the public eye - JK and Joel. Working in another country can be difficult and it is necessary to work with the authorities to pave the way for the event to take place. H aims to get maximum press and business exposure. In the case of Ibiza they set up a website and kept it up to date - research shows that quite a few of Radio 1s listeners go their for their holidays. The results of this party in Ibiza were published in Zoo Magazine - read by many of their target audience. The website alone got more than a million hits.

Andy Parfitt had the last word. He said that Radio 1 would still be around when he and most of the other staff were gone. Radio 1 has constantly to adapt to survive and to strive to maintain its individuality.