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Your Reviews of the BBC Manchester Blogging Workshop

  • Robin Hamman
  • 28 Feb 07, 05:37 PM

Rather than writing our own, no doubt glowing review of the first BBC Manchester blogging workshop, we thought instead we'd practise a bit of what we spoke that evening and link out instead. Just in case you missed it, you can find links to all the different tools and services we spoke about, along with a handful of tips and ideas, in the rather long winded post I wrote the morning following the event.

The first point of call for finding "the conversation", as many bloggers call it, about the workshop was Technorati where I searched for the URL of this blog which came up with around 5 or 6 posts.

I clicked through to each post or page linking to us and, if there were further links to be found there, clicked through to those too. Then, with loads of browser windows open, I set about bookmarking them using del.icio.us. You'll find the results here. This allowed me not just to keep track of the posts, but also to share them with other interested parties (eg. the boss, impressed mates, etc).

So, returning to those links, what did people think of the first of what we hope will be many BBC Manchester blogging workshops?

Well, my colleague Richard Fair certainly sounds relieved that I did most of the talking. After Richard did a short intro, and I waffled for a few moments, Julia helped us find our feet and get into the swing of things by telling us how she got started blogging. In her post about the event, which includes some of the better photos (silly me, I HAD two cameras there, I took ZERO good photos), does a nice job of encapsalating what it is we were trying to do with the evening:

"The goal of the workshop was to bring together the Mancunian bloggers of all degrees of proficiency and to cover a variety of topics, from choosing the right platform to making money with your blog."

Julia goes on to mention that Craig McGinty, brave soul that he is, got up and did a short turn towards the end of the workshop on how to monetise a blog. Craig is a freelance journalist who makes most of his living from the various blogs he authors, including ThisFrenchLife, which he used to demonstrate how you can make effective use of Google Adsense, Amazon Associates and other revenue sharing programmes. Craig's now kindly posted up some fairly extensive notes on what he said. Thanks Craig.

Ickle web came to the workshop with a specific goal in mind:

"An interesting evening all round, it was the BBC Manchester blogging workshop. Assembled were a wide selection of bloggers (and possible future bloggers) listening to Robin waxing lyrical on blogging. For me, I was looking for ways to sell some of my photographs as prints, posters and the like."

We didn't do a very good job of answering that one very definitively so if anyone has any ideas...

Speaking of photographers, Toast, who is taking a photo each day for a year, came along. Sadly he didn't take any photos of the workshop but if he had, believe me when I say they probably would have been really beautiful and insightful.

Ben Wright, who has just published his first novel The Fatal Verse of the Valley, has been too busy blogging the Oscars to write about the workshop.

Stuart, whose blog Modern Life is Rubbish has a technorati ranking in the low 2000's (that's REALLY good) and who wrote his own blog software because all the commercial stuff he used just couldn't support his traffic came along and scared us with acronyms: php, sql... uh, what?! Anyway, he said:

"What followed was a fairly casual walkthrough of some of the basics behind establishing, maintaining and promoting a blog - all fairly elementary but essential aspects of bloggery."

Next time I think we'll ask Stuart to stand up and do some of the less elementary bits! ;-)

Award for most complimentary (the cash we promised is behind reception - just give your name) blog post about the event goes to Johnathan at Wordcast who wrote:

"The evening was very well crafted for people new to blogs and old hands alike. There was something for everyone. They touched on the various tools you can use to blog such as; Blogger, Wordpress, Moveable Type and Type pad. They also touched on ways to monitor the effectiveness of your blog with services like Technorati and Statcounter."

By the way, that box by the front door that says "please put your used visitor pass here" was a bit lighter than we expected it to be at the end of the evening. Speaking of guidelines, Lewis wanted to know more about the BBC's editorial guidelines and, in particular, what we might and might not be willing and able to link to. Well, if it's any comfort, Mancubist didn't even turn up and he got a link soon after from the BBC England home page so we must not be too greedy with those links, aye?

For those I've missed, you'll have to forgive me - having entirely missed out on the 50p cans of fosters rumoured to have been available behind the bar, I made up for it at our apres blog workshop location with a small group of people who stuck around. If I didn't link to you but you were there do post a comment below with a link to your blog, flickr photos, myspace page or whatever.

Thanks again to everyone who came along. We really enjoyed it and hope to organise more of these in the near future.

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