Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Blogs can change your life and business... Let's see

Yesterday I decided to start this blog based on an article from this month's Business 2.0 magazine. In that article, a famous NYC Venture Capitalist (who, by the way, I've never heard of, but here's his blog: avc.blogs.com) explains how critical it is to have a blog.... So I decided to investigate.
A little history: I put together my first web presence in 1994 with the ULAPO project. It was a static HTML website in CompuServe's servers. To check out the site you had to key-in a 10 character code corresponding to the username... I you couldn't change it!.
Anyway, when the web became mainstream, the fear for identity theft and a job in Network Security made me realize the importance of "Net Anonymity". So I avoided having a personal website, or even signing someone else's "Guest Book". My email was only for family, and I would even have different email accounts for my subscriptions to mailinglists - with fake Full Names, of course.
Now, I read about this guy and he has a very good point about blogs.... why keep that anonymity, when it can actually be productive to "be" in the web. So I had to do some research. My starting point: Google. Of course, I got a gazillion results for "bloging...did you mean blogging?". My next step.... search directly in renown magazines and news sites (e.g. CNET.com, WSJ.com, BusinessWeek.com), and I found the perfect article: believe it or not, this week's BusinessWeek top story is titled "Blogs Will Change your Business". It is great! I Highly recommend it (maybe December is Blog's Month)
The article explains why it is important to have a blog, why care, and some people that have been successful about it. It is not that you need to have a Journalism degree, or a career in the media.... it's anyone.... not even frustrated reporters... it's anyone. Indeed the web is a great tool for reporters, and it has created a new type of freelance reporters out there, but that's not the point. The benefit can be huge for any company in any industry - low cost advertisement, brand exposure, customer education channel, sales channel, you name it...
A little disclaimer though: It's important to say, that employees have got into big trouble with their employers due to a simple blog posting. In the BusinessWeek's article, there is an example of a Google employee who posted complaints about his Health Insurance (compared it with his previous employer, Microsoft) and got fired. Some people tend to disclose company secrets.... the newest feature of the newest product that will come out next year... if you are going to post in blogs, do it with care.
The popular blog search engine, technorati.com, posted the following results for "New Blogs Per Day" for the last year and a half.


Now, do you notice how the number just went down in the last month's data?.... why is that?.... maybe people got tire of creating blogs and blogs, and decided to consolidate them in one, or concentrate they're writing efforts in one... who knows, but I will definitely see if I can keep up with this writing almost everyday... we'll see.

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