inkwell.vue.258 : David Kline, "Blog!"
permalink #76 of 102: Jon Lebkowsky (jonl) Mon 14 Nov 05 14:45
    
Journalists can move to the web, if there are business models for
online journalism that pay sufficiently well. But it seems to me that
newspapers are unlikely to survive a transition away from their
expensive bricks-and-mortar legacy to agile web publishing. Systems
like Craig's list are leapfrog businesses, they jumped over the
newspaper industry and nabbed its bread and butter, classified ads...
no?
  
inkwell.vue.258 : David Kline, "Blog!"
permalink #77 of 102: David Kline (dkline) Mon 14 Nov 05 15:05
    
I'm not so sure. Check out this article on magazines (and I bet something 
similar applies to newspapers):

_________________

READERS OF DIGITAL VERSIONS OF print magazines appear to be growing less 
reliant on print editions and are utilizing related digital options, 
including the websites and email updates of those publications, according 
to the third year of a reader profile study of one of the major digital 
publishing platform providers. The findings, which come from a custom 
Nielsen//NetRatings study of readers of digital magazines adapted by 
NewsStand Inc., finds the percentage of digital magazine readers who also 
read the publication's print edition has declined from 40.1 percent in 
2003 to 29.0 percent in 2005. Use of the magazine Web sites has 
fluctuated, but currently is averaging 55 percent of digital edition 
subscribers. Email updates has increased slightly, and RSS feeds, while 
still a small percentage, has doubled since 2004 to 4.0 percent in 2005. 
Other Mediums Used By Digital Magazine Subscribers 

The findings comes as the print world is trying to come to grips with its 
migration to digital media, and whether the legacy of printed formats will 
hold up in digital form. While some remain dubious, digital editions have 
grown to be a significant share of the subscribers of some trade 
publications, especially tech industry magazines. 

According to data released Tuesday by magazine circulation auditor BPA 
Worldwide, top digital magazine titles have shown a dramatic increase in 
their "digital-only" subscription bases. All but one of the top 25 digital 
publications audited by the BPA, had double-digit growth in digital-only 
subscriptions during the reporting period ending June 30, 2005. The top 
digital title eWeek boosted its digital only subscribers 16.2 percent. 
Followed by a 30.0 percent gain for Computer Weekly, and a 32.9 percent 
gain for Redmond. The fastest-growing digital edition was Microscope, 
which grew 49.4 percent during the period. 

Consumer magazine publishers also are wrestling with the conversion to 
digital. Some major publishers such as Playboy have already embraced 
digital editions, and the Magazine Publishers of America will hold its 
first digital publishing conference, "Magazines 24/7: Leveraging Consumer 
Magazine Brands In The Digital Age," Dec. 8 in New York. 



Joe Mandese is Editor of MediaPost.
 
 
http://publications.mediapost.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=Articles.showArticle&ar
t_aid=36118&passFuseAction=PublicationsSearch.showSearchReslts&art_searched=%2
2digital%20versions%22&page_number=0
  
inkwell.vue.258 : David Kline, "Blog!"
permalink #78 of 102: Jeff Loomis (jal) Mon 14 Nov 05 17:08
    
Now there is a URL that needs tinyurl.com
  
inkwell.vue.258 : David Kline, "Blog!"
permalink #79 of 102: David Kline (dkline) Mon 14 Nov 05 17:43
    
yeah, how do they come up with stuff like that? Weird.
  
inkwell.vue.258 : David Kline, "Blog!"
permalink #80 of 102: Jon Lebkowsky (jonl) Mon 14 Nov 05 18:22
    
What I was suggesting, though, was not that newspapers can't make the
transition and hold onto their readers, but that they'll have a tough
time supporting the transition while sustaining their legacy systems in
the interim if they're losing the classified ad market to more
efficient online operations like Ebay, Craig's List, Realtors.com, etc.
  
inkwell.vue.258 : David Kline, "Blog!"
permalink #81 of 102: Jon Lebkowsky (jonl) Tue 15 Nov 05 07:01
    
Moving on... could you say a bit about your conversations with
business bloggers like Robert Scoble of Microsoft? Scoble seems to
speak pretty freely about the company, given his position in the ranks.
  
inkwell.vue.258 : David Kline, "Blog!"
permalink #82 of 102: David Kline (dkline) Tue 15 Nov 05 09:00
    
Yeah, Scoble is an interesting and admirable character, in my view. He 
says what he thinks -- and even criticizes Microsoft when he thinks it's 
warranted -- but he sticks to what he knows.

For example, I just finished a piece for Wired on whether or not companies 
start blogging mainly when they're in trouble -- i.e., when they have bad 
PR or their traditional communication strategies are ineffective. Scoble 
told me he thought the premise was true for at least some companies, but 
when asked whether that was why Microsoft executives hired him away from 
NEC and encouraged him to blog, he answered: "They don't let me come to 
those meetings."
  
inkwell.vue.258 : David Kline, "Blog!"
permalink #83 of 102: nape fest (zorca) Tue 15 Nov 05 14:18
    
how well do you think blogs might work within organizations as knowledge
bases? i haven't been paying too much attention to the business side of
blogs, but it does seem that groups blogs might be ways for individuals
within a business or organization to share information that might otherwise
reside only with single individuals or units.
  
inkwell.vue.258 : David Kline, "Blog!"
permalink #84 of 102: David Kline (dkline) Wed 16 Nov 05 09:46
    
I could re-state what I wrote in the book on that subject, but maybe it
makes more sense just to copy and post it here. Note that this was written
in April, so enterprise and project-management blogging has no doubt
advanced since then:

_____________


Although the phenomenon of employee blogging has received considerable
attention in the media, its burgeoning effect upon enterprise productivity
has been largely ignored. This despite the fact that "industrial strength"  
or enterprise blogging is already beginning to supplant some of the
traditional systems and methods that managers and employees use to
communicate with each other and carry out their daily tasks. That's
because blogging software platforms appear to have significant advantages
over more costly traditional knowledge management systems designed to
enable employees to access, store, forward and publish everything from
departmental reports, sales forecasts, marketing plans, financial
analyses, engineering documents, and supplier and vendor contracts to
individual to-do lists, appointment calendars and meeting notes.

For one thing, current knowledge management systems are built upon a 
veritable Tower of Babel of differing document and data formats as well as 
application-specific interfaces, protocols and operating systems. If you 
don't know what ODBC, SQL, MAPI, or POP3 is, then you're just going to 
have to trust us that in many firms, trying to access critical information 
or communicate effectively with colleagues is a bit like talking in 
tongues -- only without all the associated convulsing and dancing about 
(unless, of course, you happen to be one of the system's harried 
administrators). 

Enterprise blogs, on the other hand, store, publish, and forward 
everything in the most widely-used publishing format on earth: HTML, the 
language of the Web. And when you add in RSS syndication capabilities -- a 
kind of "subscription service" that automatically delivers relevant 
information to those who request it -- this means that employees can 
access all the data and reports they need without having to spend hours 
hunting for them. 

If, for example, Procter & Gamble CEO A.G. Lafley wants to keep up with 
the relevant goings on in our hypothetical infant car seat business, he no 
longer needs to badger his underlings to forward him whatever reports they 
happen to be able to dig up from their files or from a back-up tape in the 
archive somewhere. Instead, he can simply "subscribe" to the division's 
most critical information -- key departmental reports, sales forecasts, 
R&D feasibility studies, supplier and distributor communications, product 
and industry news, market research, and, of course, customer feedback 
surveys -- and have it delivered automatically to his desktop computer to 
review at his leisure. 

As no less an authority than Microsoft chairman Bill Gates pointed out: 
"If I do a trip report, say, and put that in blog format, then all the 
employees of Microsoft who really want to look at that can find the 
information [simply by subscribing]."

Aside from convenience, ease of use, and seamless interoperability, of 
course, enterprise blogging offers two additional and very powerful 
advantages over traditional email-dependent communications systems: 
persistence and searchability. As David Berlin, the executive editor of 
industry journal ZDNet and one of the most insightful advocates of 
enterprise blogging, put it: "It's scary [when you realize] that email is 
not searchable, it's not accessible to anyone else, and most of the time 
if somebody leaves the company, they just simply wipe it out, even though 
it [contains] everything that person ever did and everyone they were in 
contact with. That information is simply lost."

Not so with blogs. For all these reasons, then, a still-small but growing 
number of firms have begun to use internal blogs as project- or 
enterprise-wide management systems. Whether blogs will replace current 
document management systems, or current document management systems will 
develop blog capabilities, the simplicity and ease of use of this 
technology virtually guarantees its wider adoption within corporate 
America.

Will this lead to macroeconomic increases in business productivity and 
economic growth? Anyone who recalls the "productivity paradox" of the 
1980s will certainly be cautious in speculating on that point. During that 
decade, over 20 million PCs entered the American workplace for the first 
time, and economists expected a surge in productivity to result. None was 
seen, however -- at least not until the advent of email and networked 
communications in the early 1990s. Thus the "paradox" was finally 
understood to mean that automation alone, unless accompanied by improved 
communications, does not necessarily lead to increased productivity. Or, 
as the futurist Paul Saffo famously put it, "A computer without a network 
is nothing more than a paperweight."

If there's one thing we can absolutely and positively say about blogging,
it's that it fosters improved communication. It therefore seems likely
that just as blogging is finally realizing the Web's original promise as a
medium of individual expression and public discourse, so may enterprise
blogging bring about some of the larger productivity increases long
promised by information technology.

___________________
  
inkwell.vue.258 : David Kline, "Blog!"
permalink #85 of 102: Jon Lebkowsky (jonl) Wed 16 Nov 05 10:40
    
There's a Yahoo group on this subject that's been around for several
years: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/klogs/  "Klogs" are weblogs used
for knowledge management within an organization. 

If some corporations are understanding how blogs can be effective
internally, does this mean that their PR departments will be more
effective in understanding and addressing the blogosphere? (For
reference, Steve Broback posted yesterday that PR people in general
aren't getting blogs:
http://blogbusinesssummit.com/2005/11/blogging_the_pr.htm)
  
inkwell.vue.258 : David Kline, "Blog!"
permalink #86 of 102: Jamais Cascio, WorldChanger (cascio) Wed 16 Nov 05 10:56
    
Does "tagging" have a place in the organizational blogosphere? Blogs and RSS
are useful tools, in combination, but how has the tagging concept worked
its way into the set?
  
inkwell.vue.258 : David Kline, "Blog!"
permalink #87 of 102: David Kline (dkline) Wed 16 Nov 05 11:29
    
I can't answer that question, unfortunately, because I haven't looked at 
it yet. 

Meanwhile, check this out:

Report: Online Newspaper Readership Up 11% in Oct.

By E&P Gerry Davison, senior media analyst, Nielsen//NetRating Staff 

Published: November 15, 2005 2:05 PM ET 

NEW YORK If there's a silver lining in the dark cloud that was last week's 
circulation figures, look no further than your nearest newspaper Web site.

While the Audit Bureau of Circulations' numbers showed a 2.6% decline in
daily paid circulation for U.S. newspapers, Nielsen//NetRatings reports
that newspaper Web sites grew 11% year-over-year to 39.3 million unique
visitors in October 2005, comprising 26% of the active U.S. Internet
population.

The 11% increase exceeds the growth of the active Internet universe as a
whole, which rose 3% year-over-year.

According to Nielsen//NetRatings, among online adults who read either a
print or online newspaper, 22% have shifted their readership preferences
from offline to online sources. The majority of readers, 71%, still prefer
print newspapers, while 7% divide their time evenly between the two
sources.

NYTimes.com was the top U.S. online newspaper site, with 11.4 million
unique visitors in October 2005. USAToday.com and WashingtonPost.com took
the second and third spots with 10.4 and 8.1 million unique visitors,
respectively. LATimes.com and SFGate.com rounded out the top five with 3.9
million unique visitors each.

Then come Web sites for the Boston Globe, New York Daily News, Wall Street
Journal, Houston Chronicle, and Chicago Sun-Times.

"The growth among newspaper Web sites demonstrates that these entities 
offer unique incentives to visitors," Gerry Davison, senior media analyst, 
Nielsen//NetRatings, said in a statement. Most, if not all of the top 
newspaper sites offer interactivity such as blogs, podcasts, and streaming 
video/audio. These interactive features, combined with Internet users' 
thirst for up-to-date information, make newspaper Web sites an 
increasingly appealing choice for news."

Men (56%) constituted the majority of online newspapers readership in 
October. People with an income between $100,000 and $150,000 and those 
with a bachelor's or postgraduate degree were also likely to visit online 
newspapers, comprising 21% and 52% of visitors, respectively.
  
inkwell.vue.258 : David Kline, "Blog!"
permalink #88 of 102: David Kline (dkline) Wed 16 Nov 05 12:35
    
Thanks for the link to k-logs, Jon. 

And no, I don't think they will encourage PR pros' embrace of blogging. In 
fact, I think the biggest roadblock to corporate adoption of public blogs 
does not lie in the executive suite, but in the corporate PR department 
and marketing communications office.
  
inkwell.vue.258 : David Kline, "Blog!"
permalink #89 of 102: nape fest (zorca) Wed 16 Nov 05 15:33
    
thanks <dkline> and <jonl>. the phenomenal adoption of tagging within blogs
and on places like flickr and del.icio.us seems to be telling us something
about how users can build topographies of information. i can't imagine that
some businesses won't find it useful, but also haven't run across any truly
notable examples.
  
inkwell.vue.258 : David Kline, "Blog!"
permalink #90 of 102: David Kline (dkline) Wed 16 Nov 05 16:39
    
Then check out this cnet article. They don't use the word "tags," but they 
describe the process:

A prime example is the MySpace social network site, recently purchased by 
Rupert Murdoch's News Corp., which has become so important in the music 
business that it recently announced the creation of its own label. The 
more than 500,000 bands and artists that maintain sites there provide 
streaming access to songs, interviews with musicians and instant 
networking with and among fans. 

It's those connections that can spread likes and dislikes at the speed of 
gossip. Members can add people with similar likes into their personal 
networks, browse the favorite movies and bands of others and then add 
those groups as "friends." 

Small labels have seen public awareness of bands rise sharply after 
reaching a critical mass on MySpace. Doghouse Records new media director 
Matt Rubin cites the case of one of his bands, The Honorary Title, which 
was one of the first groups featured on the front page of MySpace and now 
has had more than 35,000 people ask to be "friends." 

It's a more personal experience for people," Rubin said. "Younger fans 
love that. If they have the time, bands should do the whole participating 
thing." 

Major label executives have said that it's nearly as important to have a 
presence on MySpace as it is to have a single on the radio. 

"As I talk to our A&R (talent scout) guys, many of them spend a fair 
amount of time on MySpace," EMI's Klein said. "MySpace has gotten to a 
critical mass in terms of volume, and it is almost an instant market 
research unit." 

http://news.com.com/Grassroots%20taste%20makers%20define%20opinions/2009-1025_
3-5942440.html


And then there's this study:

http://www.intelliseek.com/releases2.asp?id=141

And this is specifcally about using tags in marketing:

http://freshtakes.typepad.com/znetlady/2005/09/tagging_what_is.html
  
inkwell.vue.258 : David Kline, "Blog!"
permalink #91 of 102: nape fest (zorca) Wed 16 Nov 05 18:45
    
that freshtakes article is a great overview.

here's one that's not about business specifically, but some good thoughts on
tagging...

http://www.alexandrasamuel.com/20050516/today-in-the-toronto-star-tagging/

also kinda fun to watch clay shirky and peter merholz duke it out over
semantics...

http://www.peterme.com/archives/000558.html

http://shirky.com/writings/ontology_overrated.html
  
inkwell.vue.258 : David Kline, "Blog!"
permalink #92 of 102: Jon Lebkowsky (jonl) Wed 16 Nov 05 18:50
    
(Zorca slipped me with some good links... but here's what I was gonna
say. BTW Clay's "Ontology is Overrated" is what led us to start the
"You're It" blog at tagsonomy.com.)

Information Architect Peter Morville on tagging:
http://semanticstudios.com/publications/semantics/000057.php

"As leading indicatrs of semantic serendipity, the folksonomies of
Flickr and del.icio.us are cool, but when it comes to findability or
re-findability, stacked up against Google and Google Images and Google
Desktop, they barely merit attention."

Though I think Technorati's approach to tagging can be useful. It's
easy to tag your blog items so that they'll be indexed by Technorati's
parsebots, you just use the href attribute rel="tag". 
http://technorati.com/help/tags.html

You can also use tags internally on your blog.

What makes the tags useful? I would agree that they don't help you
find specifics, but they're useful in aggregating posts by subject. So
if I'm hearing noise about Bob Woodward today, and I want to see what a
few random bloggers are saying, I can look up the tag "woodward" on
Technorati and get relevant hits. Check out
http://technorati.com/tag/woodward

(...and be distracted by Crystal Boudreau's tornado photos!)

Do you think this aggregate view adds new perspectives? Or would we be
better off reading the NY Times and the Washington Post?
  
inkwell.vue.258 : David Kline, "Blog!"
permalink #93 of 102: Sharon Brogan (sbmontana) Wed 16 Nov 05 20:15
    
The Newshour did a long piece tonight on "Citizen Journalism": 
http://www.pbs.org/newshour/media/index.html
  
inkwell.vue.258 : David Kline, "Blog!"
permalink #94 of 102: Nancy White (choco) Thu 17 Nov 05 19:50
    
Hey, we should invite Alexandra to be a guest in VC and blogs!
  
inkwell.vue.258 : David Kline, "Blog!"
permalink #95 of 102: Jon Lebkowsky (jonl) Thu 17 Nov 05 21:00
    
Good idea!

Meanwhile, this is the last night of the _Blog!_ discussion, unless we
want to continue hanging out. David, do you have anything to add?
  
inkwell.vue.258 : David Kline, "Blog!"
permalink #96 of 102: Sharon Brogan (sbmontana) Thu 17 Nov 05 22:01
    
We have focused mostly on political and business blogs -- as most
discussions do -- but most blogs are neither of these. They are
personal blogs, some with a theme (knitting, or kids, or poetry) and
some that are more like public journals or 'commonplace books'. These
are the blogs I like to read. This is the kind of blog I write -- or
'keep' -- 

I'm curious why they aren't the blogs we talk about? Because they are
on the 'long tail', with small (relatively) audiences? 

I am confident that my poems get more readers online than they would
if I were actually "published" -- between Watermark and my poetry
sites, hundreds of hits a day. For poems. I think this is amazing.
  
inkwell.vue.258 : David Kline, "Blog!"
permalink #97 of 102: Jon Lebkowsky (jonl) Fri 18 Nov 05 10:35
    
We didn't get to blogging and media, either. There are so many kinds
of blogs, we could go on for weeks.

A new discussion starts today, but as a former host of inkwell, I know
it's fine for us to keep posting here. I'm prepared to hang around and
hope David will hang in, too. 
  
inkwell.vue.258 : David Kline, "Blog!"
permalink #98 of 102: Gail Williams (gail) Fri 18 Nov 05 10:42
    
Why not?  Lots of interesting ideas, and plenty to talk about!
  
inkwell.vue.258 : David Kline, "Blog!"
permalink #99 of 102: David Kline (dkline) Fri 18 Nov 05 10:57
    
Actually, Sharon, a recent AOL survey found that blogs are more likely to
deal with personal matters than politics or current events, and nearly 50%
of bloggers see the activity as a form of therapy.

According to this survey, about one-half of bloggers (48.7%) keep a blog
because it serves as a form of therapy, and 40.8% say it helps them keep
in touch with family and friends. Just 16.2% say they are interested in
journalism, and 7.5% want to expose political information. Few see
blogging as their ticket to fame.

I addressed this issue in my book:
_____________

Blogs help break through the anonymity and isolation of modern life. They
give people a voice and a forum with which to speak truth to power -- or
at least to reach out and touch someone. And although blogs certainly
won't give rise to a million new citizen-Shakespeares, they do enable
talented but heretofore-unacknowledged people with something to say to
find an audience -- and thereby pluck from the indifference of daily life
a bit of validation for themselves, their ideas and their creative
abilities.  

In other words, blogging's ultimate product is "empowerment." A weblog
"creates a fluid and living form of self-representation, like an avatar in
cyberspace that we wear like a skin," says the Web producer Tom Coates.  
"Through it we articulate ourselves." 

Or, to put it another way, "I blog, therefore I am."

[Indeed, blogging] can produce a new and powerful sense of meaning in a
blogger's life. Tens of thousands of women, for example, are now
documenting their rites of passage as new mothers or in new careers
through blogs -- and just as important, sharing those experiences with
others and receiving support and counsel in the process. In a similar
vein, many others are writing a daily record of their battles against
cancer and other deadly illnesses, sharing their strength, hopes and fears
with friends and supporters they never knew they had.

The truth is that these are not just the tiresome ramblings of the boring
written to the bored. Though for the most part not professional writers,
bloggers are often eloquent in the way that only those who are not
self-consciously polished often are -- raw, uncensored, and energized by
the sound of their newly-awakened voices. And by keeping a daily record of
their rites of passage, bloggers often give a shape and meaning to the
stages and cycles of their lives that would otherwise be missed in the
helter-skelter of modern existence.

Sages and psychotherapists, after all, always advise us to view the
struggles of our lives as journeys -- as pilgrimages, if you will -- so
that we might gain from them not just the memory of difficulties endured
but the wisdom of lessons learned and challenges met. Finally this advice
is being put into practice on a massive scale, by millions of ordinary
people through their blogs. And while it is impossible to divine the end
result of this epic social experiment on either the individual lives of
the bloggers themselves or on society as a whole -- other than, perhaps,
to predict a decline in the numbers of people who visit therapists just to
have someone to talk with about their lives -- one must assume that the
more deliberatively people appraise and document their lives, the more
purposefully those lives will be lived.

________________________
  
inkwell.vue.258 : David Kline, "Blog!"
permalink #100 of 102: Hal Royaltey (hal) Fri 18 Nov 05 12:41
    
Hard to believe, but our two weeks have passed and the interview
is officially over, and it's time to thank David and Jon for a 
great time.

On the Well, however, nothing is ever really over.   Please feel
free to continue the discussion.   There are a number of questions
and comments still hanging fire ...

Thanks guys!!
  

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