Friday, 8 January 2010

To stream or not to stream

You'll have noticed the little experiment with the auto feeding of my tweets to this blog. It was really a spot of laziness on my part as I've not had much time for blogging recently and thought it was better to have something appearing here regularly...just to keep the interest of my reader :-)

I've noticed a few bloggers recently shifting to 'life streaming' It appeals from a personal perspective - would be good to have all my online activity recorded in one place. But...I don't particularly want to read other folks streams...but....I have said before that this blog is all about me! What to do? I have a feeling that if I did shift to a life streaming approach it would make me even lazier than I am now...and I wouldn't do enough of the deeper thinking that writing a proper blog post requires.

And on that subject - just to prove that I have done some thinking recently - I recently contributed to an interesting discussion on Dave Brigg's blog on 'the state of the UK gov blogosphere'. The whole discussion is well worth a read as there are perspectives offered from several gov bloggers, but here are my own thoughts on why civil servants don't blog as much as maybe they should:

Blogging is a good thing, yes, no argument there. And I think we're actually getting to stage where we're getting a good community of government bloggers.

As to reasons why civil servants don't blog…From a personal perpective my own blogging is limited by:

- Yep, a lack of time. My blogging is done in my own time and I'm struggling to do any at the moment because I'm having to do so much of the 'day' job at home as well.

- And yes, also, a lack of things to write about. Not a lack of things I'd LIKE to write about – but a lack of things I CAN write about.

More generally, most civil servants I know are yet to be convinced by Web 2.0 in any shape or form (many still don't see the relevance of the web at all!). Digital engagement more generally requires a dramatic shift in the way civil servants conduct their working lives and change can be difficult for us!

It's also a personal thing though. The reflective nature of blogging doesn't come naturally to everyone. And for civil servants, it's not how we're taught to write! I'm a professionally qualified librarian and for my CPD am expected to be a reflective practitioner. I started blogging as a way of of facilitating that – but I have found it difficult. And reflection isn't always something that is valued by managers.

I'm sure confidence is also an issue. I'm under no illusions that anyone actually reads my blog (other than a couple of my colleagues and my boyfriend :-) ), but as I blog for primarily selfish reasons, my miserable Google Analytics stats don't upset me (too) much. The blogosphere can be harsh. Anyone starting up a new blog would need a very thick skin or they could get disheartened pretty quickly.

1 comment:

Barry Dewar said...

Blogging and Life streaming are quite different things and I think that blogging is evolving quite separately now from other web 2.0 things.

Chris Brogan has a view on this (is there anything he doesn't have a view on?)

Personally I love reading other people's blogs and have blogged myself on and off for years. Life streaming would be harder for me because I don't spend all day looking for photo opportunities or getting wound up by customer services.