Web: Blogging FAQ

Before you start...

If you are unfamiliar with blogging, the following frequently asked questions may help.  If you would like to see some examples of blogs associated with Cedarville University, please visit blogs.cedarville.edu.

What is a blog?

The term "blog" is a contraction of the words web + log. According to Wikipedia, a blog is a "user-generated website where entries are made in journal style and displayed in a reverse chronological order" (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/blog).

Blogs may contain content on a particular subject or may be used as an online journal. A blog typically contains text, images, links, and webpages addressing the interests of the creator.

Why would I want to blog?

Academically, blogs are useful for class announcements or homework assignment updates. They serve as a public collection of information shared with all readers/subscribers to the blog.

For example, some classes have submitted group papers as posts to a class blog. This allowed the entire class to review the papers and refer to them.

Blogs also provide a global platform to communicate an important message.

Is it difficult to start blogging?

Although the mechanics of writing a blog are fairly straightforward, prospective bloggers are encouraged to refer to the related help page on Blog Etiquette.

There is no prescribed way of posting your information on the web. If you can compose a text document, then you can write a blog.

Are there any potential issues to consider?

  • Legal issues: Avoid violating copyrights or committing libel.
  • Privacy issues: It is nearly impossible to blog and remain anonymous. Be careful when posting private information – about yourself or about other people. Be aware of the potential consequences of posting controversial material. Also, keep in mind the fact that current or potential employers may read and care about the content of your blog.
  • What you write is permanent. There is no way to restrict access to what you have written after you post it, so be careful what you write on your blog. In the current web environment, you must assume that information you post on your blog will be permanently accessible.
  • Personal issues: Blogging is a time commitment. Loyal readers will expect regular, fresh content, or their interest will wane. Also, remember that there is a difference between the real world and the online world, and think through carefully how much time you want to spend online. Think biblically about the purpose of your blog and the purpose of each post.
  • The owner of the blog is liable for any content written in the blog.

How do I start a blog?

University Use

  • Please submit a web request if you are interested in creating a blog on Cedarville University's website.

Personal Use

  1. Your first step is to create a user account with one of the providers Cedarville supports (please see the list below). This is normally very simple to do and takes little time to complete.
  2. You will need to create a username and password for the account. Depending on the provider, you may be required to fill in some personal information. A good rule of thumb is to fill in as little personal information as possible. Unless the provider states that they are keeping your information private, you must assume that the information may be used for marketing purposes.
  3. The next step will be to fill in your profile. The information that you provide will be displayed to everyone. Never include personal information like addresses, phone numbers, or any information that could compromise the security of your identity.
  4. If you are planning on posting frequently, you could set up your blog as an RSS feed. An RSS feed brings the content to readers instead of requiring them to check for new content.

Where can I start my blog?

Cedarville University supports the following providers. Look for the help link on the provider's site for specific help with their service.

Keywords: privacy, security, weblog, blog, web blog, journal, blogging, xanga, blogCFC, private

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