For many, blogging is just a hobby. Something that keeps us up late and cuts into our television watching time. For some, of course, blogging has a more important role as a promotional tool or even a source of income (or so I hear).
I've been interested to watch the growing sophistication of blog networks. One in particular that I like is Chicago Now which pulls together a wide variety of blogs with just one thing in common: geography.
They've again revamped their site making it as slick as any big media site (the network was created by the Tribune Media Group, owners of the Chicago Tribune, after all) and with way more depth than any local paper or TV station could ever have.
Now bloggers are increasingly networking the old fashioned way - face to face !
Last week was the BlogHer 2010 Conference in New York City. It's the sixth annual conference with the largest attendance to-date and an impressive line-up of big corporate sponsors.
A learning and networking opportunity for women bloggers, BlogHer promoted the conference by saying "we think it's a great time to celebrate the fact that our blogging, whether personal, professional or political, has brought us work, friends, satisfaction and is most definitely a significant part of our real life! "
The agenda was wide-ranging. Workshops included: a one-year review of the U.S. Federal Trade Commission's new guidelines for bloggers and on-line marketers; The White House Project for politically active and office-holding women looking to make the most of their on-line presence; numerous tech sessions including Fight Spam and Hackers! Plugging Security Holes in Your Social Media Life.
The website The Responsibility Project partnered with the conference and has been posting a series of questions for attendees such as: Unplugging Yourself: How Do You Balance Reality and Sanity? (which, as I sit here at 2:30 am writing this, I might read more about later !) and Ethical Blogging: What's Responsible Online?.
More content from the 2010 conference can be found here. BlogHer 2011 takes place next August in San Diego.
On the local front, View from Seven points out that there is a Facebook group for Winnipeg Bloggers ! They appear to be planning a second get together for local addicts to meet face to face !