How does Blogging Create and Support Knowledge Communities

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Presentation on the intersection between blogs and communities, given for the ASIST panel on Blogs and Wikis in the Enterprise.

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<ul><li> 1. How does Blogging Create and Support Knowledge Communities Jack Vinson Knowledge Jolt, Inc. www.jackvinson.com[email_address]</li></ul> <p> 2. 3. Communities: formation </p> <ul><li>About: Common interest </li></ul> <ul><li><ul><li>In public: science, religion, family, shared history, neighborhood </li></ul></li></ul> <ul><li><ul><li>In organizations: work processes, work problems, academic discipline, company history </li></ul></li></ul> <ul><li>People gathering </li></ul> <ul><li><ul><li>In a physical space </li></ul></li></ul> <ul><li><ul><li>Online at a specific venue: bulletin boards, forums, mailing lists, </li></ul></li></ul> <p> 4. Communities: existence </p> <ul><li>Why do they stay together? </li></ul> <ul><li><ul><li>Leadership </li></ul></li></ul> <ul><li><ul><li>Common interest / purpose </li></ul></li></ul> <ul><li><ul><li>Shared space (physical or virtual) </li></ul></li></ul> <ul><li>Why do they disband? </li></ul> <ul><li><ul><li>Passion (central purpose) fades </li></ul></li></ul> <ul><li><ul><li>Change / Loss of space </li></ul></li></ul> <p> 5. Weblogs / Blogging </p> <ul><li>Individual author (generally) </li></ul> <ul><li>Frequently updated </li></ul> <ul><li>Reverse chronological postings </li></ul> <ul><li>Topics to the authors interests </li></ul> <ul><li>Lightweight content management system </li></ul> <p> 6. Blogs general layout 7. Layout single entry Title Quote Comments Body Other articles withthe same topics 8. Blogs and communities? </p> <ul><li>Communities are aboutcommoninterest </li></ul> <ul><li>Blogs are aboutmyinterests </li></ul> <p> 9. Blogs and communities? </p> <ul><li>On the other hand, blogs are all about connecting with the larger world </li></ul> <ul><li><ul><li>Heres something I find interesting </li></ul></li></ul> <ul><li><ul><li>Heres something Jane wrote, and this is why I think you should read it. </li></ul></li></ul> <ul><li><ul><li>Would I write if no one were reading? </li></ul></li></ul> <ul><li>Hints of community: calls for help, quotes, links, blogrolls, comments, trackbacks </li></ul> <p> 10. 11. Hints of community in blogs </p> <ul><li>Community of readers </li></ul> <ul><li><ul><li>A-list bloggers have thousands of readers </li></ul></li></ul> <ul><li><ul><li>Readers are willing to help when directly called upon </li></ul></li></ul> <ul><li><ul><li>Very much a one-way street </li></ul></li></ul> <p> 12. Hints of community in blogs </p> <ul><li>Favorite sources </li></ul> <ul><li><ul><li>Many blogs list their favorite blogs in the sidebar (blogroll) </li></ul></li></ul> <ul><li>Quoted sources </li></ul> <ul><li><ul><li>Many bloggers quote other bloggers and other websites that inspire their writing </li></ul></li></ul> <ul><li>Get a sense of the wider world in which the blogger operates </li></ul> <p> 13. Hints of community in blogs </p> <ul><li>Comments </li></ul> <ul><li><ul><li>Readers can leave their responses directly on my website </li></ul></li></ul> <ul><li><ul><li>Sense of community can develop around those who write </li></ul></li></ul> <ul><li><ul><li>Little opportunity for participants to interact without the blog </li></ul></li></ul> <p> 14. Hints of community in blogs </p> <ul><li>Tools that can find who is talking about what has been written here </li></ul> <ul><li><ul><li>Trackback </li></ul></li></ul> <ul><li><ul><li>Search </li></ul></li></ul> <ul><li><ul><li><ul><li>Technorati:www.technorati.com </li></ul></li></ul></li></ul> <ul><li><ul><li><ul><li>Google site search / blog search </li></ul></li></ul></li></ul> <ul><li><ul><li><ul><li>TalkDigger:www.talkdigger.com </li></ul></li></ul></li></ul> <p> 15. Community in blogs </p> <ul><li>A community of bloggers </li></ul> <ul><li><ul><li>Write about similar topics </li></ul></li></ul> <ul><li><ul><li>Read each others blogs </li></ul></li></ul> <ul><li><ul><li>Get to know one another </li></ul></li></ul> <ul><li><ul><li>Draw on each others writings to extend ideas and share their point of view </li></ul></li></ul> <p> 16. Community in blogs </p> <ul><li>Traditional online community behavior </li></ul> <ul><li><ul><li>Frequent writers </li></ul></li></ul> <ul><li><ul><li>Discussions in comments</li></ul></li></ul> <ul><li><ul><li>Discussions across blogs </li></ul></li></ul> <ul><li><ul><li>Plenty of readers who belong to the community, yet are not actively vocal (lurkers)</li></ul></li></ul> <p> 17. Discovering a community </p> <ul><li>Comments, Blogroll, Trackbacks, Search </li></ul> <ul><li>Analyzing linking behavior </li></ul> <ul><li><ul><li>SNA - Who links to whom </li></ul></li></ul> <ul><li>Text analysis to find similar blogs </li></ul> <ul><li><ul><li>WayPath, Watson (both mothballed) </li></ul></li></ul> <p> 18. Building a blogging community </p> <ul><li>Is it possible to engineer a blogging community, akin to creating a Community of Practice in your business? </li></ul> <ul><li><ul><li>Will they participate? </li></ul></li></ul> <ul><li><ul><li>Critical mass? </li></ul></li></ul> <ul><li><ul><li>Technology? </li></ul></li></ul> <p> 19. Building a blogging community </p> <ul><li>Issues </li></ul> <ul><li><ul><li>How to make the connections? </li></ul></li></ul> <ul><li><ul><li>Champion / Leadership with individual ownership of blogs </li></ul></li></ul> <ul><li><ul><li>Passion and engagement </li></ul></li></ul> <ul><li>Need </li></ul> <ul><li><ul><li>Active writers, readable commentary </li></ul></li></ul> <ul><li><ul><li>Passionate writers </li></ul></li></ul> <ul><li><ul><li>Topics that matter to many people </li></ul></li></ul> <p> 20. In the end </p> <ul><li>Communities of bloggers exist </li></ul> <ul><li>Building the communities can be just as difficult as with traditional CoP </li></ul> <ul><li><ul><li>Communities are about shared interest </li></ul></li></ul> <ul><li><ul><li>Blog communities are about shared passion </li></ul></li></ul> <p> 21. References </p> <ul><li>McKinsey Quarterly </li></ul> <ul><li><ul><li>Harnessing the power of informal employee networks , 2007 Number 4 </li></ul></li></ul> <ul><li><ul><li>The role of networks in organizational change , Web exclusive, April 2007 </li></ul></li></ul> <ul><li><ul><li>Mapping the value of employee collaboration , 2006 Number 3 </li></ul></li></ul> <ul><li>Lilia Efimova has written extensively about weblog conversations and done some of these analyses ( http:// blog.mathemagenic.com )</li></ul> <ul><li>Anjo Anjewierden has been writing tools to analyze blogs from a number of perspectives ( http://anjo.blogs.com/metis/ ) </li></ul>