Connecting with “Communities of Difference” Handouts

Here’s what’s been keeping me sooooo busy over the last couple of weeks: My online handouts for a workshop I’m giving tomorrow (glances at clock) uh, today — for the Total Community Coverage in Cyberspace seminar.

My workshop title: Strategies for Connecting with Communities of Difference in a “Me” World.”

Find out more about what’s happening at the seminar via the seminar blog.

I’m Twittering the Total Community Coverage seminar

Today through Saturday I’m in downtown Los Angeles participating in the Knight Digital Media Center’s Total Community Coverage in Cyberspace seminar. You can follow the action on the special Twitter page I set up for liveblogging. (More about that.)

I’m heading off to the opening luncheon now, so most likely will start “tweeting” this afternoon. I’ll also be posting materials for my workshop to Contentious and I, Reporter this evening.

Stay tuned!

Liveblogging via a second Twitter account

Twitter
I just created a separate Twitter account for liveblogging. You can follow me there.

One reason I started using the popular microblogging tool Twitter was to experiment with liveblogging events such as conference sessions. While Twitter is not a perfect tool for this prupose, it’s less clumsy than trying to liveblog with a traditional tool such as WordPress or Typepad, I’ve found.

When I’m live-Twittering an event, I tend to post lots of “tweets” in quick succession. This can be overwhelming to my regular Twitter followers.

Therefore I’ve decided to experiment with another Twitter liveblogging approach: I’ve created a separate Twitter account called amyliveblogging. When I liveblog an event (as I’ll do with some sessions at the Total Community Coverage seminar I’ll be attending and presenting at next week), I’ll do it through that account. This way, such posts won’t clutter my regular Twitter account.

This’ll give people who want to follow me on Twitter to get only my regular day-to-day tweets, only my event coverage, or both.

Again, this is all just an experiment. We’ll see how it works out.

What do you think of this approach? Got any questions, comments, or critiques? Please comment below.

I’m Twittering the Spanish Digital Journalism Seminar

Following on Steve Outing’s Tidbits post about using Twitter to cover breaking news…

Right now I’m attending the second day of the Seminari Internacional de Periodisme Digital, held at the chic modern Neapolis center at Vilanova i la Geltru, on the Spanish coast of the Mediterranean. I’m posting highlights from my notes via Twitter. If you want to follow me there, I’m agahran on Twitter.

The session about to begin now: Citizen journalist case studies. Pau Llop of the citJ site Bottup (“Bottom Up”), and Marta Torres and Laura Rahoa of BdeBarna.

Participatory Journalism in the USA: My Talk

J-Lab’s Jan Schaffer will be a hard act to follow, but I’ll do my best.

Next Tuesday in Barcelona, Spain, I’ll be teaming up with J-Lab’s Jan Schaffer to give a talk on Participatatory Journalism in the USA: Opportunities and Challenges. This is part of the fourth Online Media Week. I’m really excited about it. I wish Jan could actually be there, but she ended up not being able to attend in person so she’ll be giving her talk via webcast.

Here’s Jan’s presentation (streaming video), and here are her slides (PowerPoint). It’s a great overview, check it out.

After Jan gets to answer some questions live (technology permitting), I’ll expand this discussion by talking about the bigger picture: Why participatory journalism matters, why it isn’t new, and how the news landscape might evolve because of participatory journalism.

What follows is merely my best guess about how my part of the talk will go. Of course, I don’t really do speeches; I prefer to engage groups in conversation so we can explore issues and think things through together. That’s much more fun for everyone. So I will most definitely stray from this script at some point during the talk. (So translators, be forewarned!)

With that, here’s what I’d like to be able to cover…
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My blog got hacked, probably at Blogworld Expo

Where better to steal blog passwords than over the open wifi at a blogger conference?

…OK, I don’t know for an absolute fact that’s where and how this blog got hacked, but it does seem extremely likely. So Blogworld Expo attendees, be forewarned — and check your blogs. Specifically, check the source code of your most recent posts — especially if you use WordPress.

Yesterday I posted about how a reader let me know that a huge chunk of spam had shown up in a post I made from Blogworld Expo in Las Vegas. As I investigated this further with the help of readers (especially Mihai Parparita) and my colleague Justin Crawford, I learned that someone had gained access to my WordPress installation (most likely by stealing my password) and inserted spam directly into my post. This problem appears to have started only very recently — while I was at Blogworld, on the conference wifi network.

Of course, this also could have occurred on the ethernet at my hotel in Vegas (the Marriott Suites on Convention Center Dr.) Or when I turned sharing on for my laptop to give a friend net access from my room (because they sell ethernet access per connected device, not per room — a total ripoff).

My hacker attempted to be a little sneaky about it. He/she used the CSS command “overflow: hidden” to keep the spam from appearing on my blog. But it did come through on my feed. Oddly, I couldn’t see the spam through my feed reader application Newsfire; nor did it appear in the built-in feed reader in Safari. But it was clearly visible in web-based feed readers like Bloglines and Google Reader.

I’m working to lock out this hacker and upgrade WordPress. But I’m also investigating how to prevent this from recurring. I travel a lot and go to a lot of conferences, so I’m on open wifi and hotel connections a lot.

Got any suggestions for preventing blog hacks? Please comment below. I have to leave on another trip shortly and could use all the help and advice I can get. Thanks.

Why blogging conferences is so damn hard

Think it’s easy blogging a blogging conference? Think again.

(UPDATE: If you’re reading this post in a feed reader, you may see a big block of spam below. Sorry about that — my blog has been hacked. I’m working to fix it.)

The thing about conferences is that, in my opinion, it’s really damn hard to both attend the conference and blog about it much — unless I go to the conference specifically to blog it. A lot of things get in the way.

Right now I’m at Blogworld Expo in Las Vegas, where yesterday my blogging ethics panel went very well (thanks to my excellent panelist and a very engaged audience). More about that panel later.

Here’s a quick rundown of my reasons (or excuses) why I have a hard time blogging at conferences, unless that’s my reason for being there…

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Boiling down blogging ethics: What would YOU do?

Rileyroxx, via Flickr (CC license)
Some decisions are harder than others.

Tomorrow I head off to Las Vegas for Blogworld Expo, where on Thursday morning I’m leading a large panel on blogging ethics.

I’ve gotta admit, normally I don’t give panel topics as much thought as I’ve been giving this one. But lately, questions of publishing ethics (in blogging and journalism) have been leaping out of me from almost everywhere. Some kind of cosmic confluence, I guess.

I first tried to sort out the core ethical issues for blogging on Oct. 29 — but not very well, I think.

So, after mulling it over for a while, here’s my second shot — and it’s the framework I’ll use in leading this panel.

Ethics, like blogs, are not one-size-fits-all. Ethics are a personal and sometimes group affair that can vary to suit different types of blogs, bloggers, and communities. The point of ethics is not just to be “right,” but to use consistent criteria for decisionmaking to promote the collective good — a very subjective goal.

Also, ethics are separate from laws and regulations. We’ve all seen cases when the ethical thing to do is to obey the law (such as respecting copyright, refraining from libel, etc.) — as well as cases where laws clash with people’s sense of what’s right.

In practice, ethics usually don’t seem like a big deal. The vast majority of ethical decisions mostly involve mundane, small situations, not extreme crises. However, being conscious of the ethics you choose and applying them to small stuff can help you make better choices and be more confident during blogging crises. Also, ethical considerations sometimes pile up and conflict — so being conscious of your own ethics can help you determine what’s most important.

It seems to me that there are six core areas where bloggers tend to encounter ethical decision points. Below are some questions intended to illuminate your personal blogging ethics in each of these areas.

Where do you stand? What do you expect from yourself and the community around your blog, and from other bloggers and communities? Consider these points…

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My Blogging Ethics Panel Expands

In just under a week, on Nov. 8, I’ll be leading what may be the biggest panel (at least numerically) at BlogWorld Expo in Las Vegas. The topic is Blogging Ethics. If you’re attending, it’s part of the “Advanced Track” in room S220 at the Las Vegas Convention Center, 10:15-11:45 am.

A couple of days ago I invited Contentious readers to help me brainstorm on this topic. So far, no takers — but really, I could use your help.

Originally the panel was to include four brilliant people and myself. I’ve been fortunate to add two more luminaries to the lineup: Lynne d Johnson (senior editor, FastCompany.com) and Josh Lasser (TV section editor, Blogcritics Magazine).

I tried to check the BlogWorld Expo speakers page to make sure all my panelists are listed, but that page isn’t displaying for me. This might just be a glitch with my browser. But in case it’s not, here are the photos and bios of everyone who will be on this panel…

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Blogging Ethics: What are the issues?

Graydancer Toby Bloomberg
Charlotte-Anne Lucas Christopher Calicott
My Blogging Ethics panelists. Clockwise from top left: Graydancer, Toby Bloomberg, Christopher Calicott, and Charlotte-Anne Lucas.

As I’m preparing for my Nov. 8 BlogWorld Expo panel on Blogging Ethics, I’m trying to map out the territory. Specifically, what are the main ethical issues that bloggers encounter?

Based on my initial research, it seems that these issues fall into two main camps: issues of form (since blogs generally have certain commonalities of presentation and delivery, regardless of content) and issues of function (the purpose of your blog, the kind of content you’re trying to deliver through that blog, and which communities you’re trying to connect with).

It seems to me (and please comment below if you disagree) that, as with most communication media, blogging ethics aren’t absolute. That’s because blogs are a tool with myriad uses.

…That said, it seems like the issues of form might be closer to absolute across the blogosphere than issues of function.

I’m trying to map out the key root-level aspects of blogging that entail ethical issues. Here’s where I’m at so far. I’d appreciate your help with designing this list…

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