Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Blopping - Blog Hopping




by Pia Infante

January 4, 2011

It is a crisp new year, as evidenced by this first TWI blog post since April 2010. As you may guess, we at The Whitman Institute have resolved to post weekly on our blog. Ta da! I am the lucky draw for week one.

As I anguished (for several long minutes) about what dialogic promotion of a more peaceful and sustainable world to bring to your discerning attention (no pressure), I found myself acting on advice from much more veteran bloggers. I started scrolling around through other people’s blogs for inspiration and ideas.

And, as is quite appropriate to the medium, I coined a new, if not frog-like, phrase to describe my journey through the billions of megabytes of others people's writing available online: Blopping. Blog. Hopping.

First, I blopped over re-read to Allison Fine’s response to Malcom Gladwell’s critique of social media as a platform for activism. I appreciated her blog’s easy to navigate layout and read several posts from 2010. Allison’s writing is quite insightful and she often refers readers to related posts elsewhere (might I suggest she points to good reading destinations for bloppers such as myself?). I noticed Allison’s blog roll in the right corner of the page (many blogs list other blogs in click through format) and blopped over to Britt Bravo’s Have Fun: Do Good blog because the name sounded enticing. And, as it turns out, Britt is a “Blog Coach.” Score. I found her post on non-profit blogging quite useful. I particularly liked her encouragement not to overly regulate the voices of different blog contributors because “blogs are all about authenticity, transparency and the voice of a real person.”

While scrolling through Britt’s blog roll, I took a quick content detour to check out Bryant Terry’s eco chef blog (his name popped out because he’s my neighbor in the Laurel neighborhood of Oakland). He’s been quoted in O Magazine. Go Bryant!

From Britt Bravo’s blog roll, I blopped over to pay a visit to an old familiar, the Social Citizen’s blog, and I appreciated the humorous good will of Kristen Ivie’s social media resolutions for 2011. I took a quick peak at Social Citizen’s sister blog at the Case Foundation and clicked immediately on “Scott Case’s top 5 reasons your nonprofit should go out of business.” I was mildly disappointed at the brevity of the post – without a link to some meatier writing and research to back up the claims.

From the Case Foundation blog, I clicked into the Tactical Philanthropy blog and was rewarded with a post by Lenore Hanisch, of the Quixote Foundation, on their decision to spend down their full endowment by 2017 (scroll down to her post, second from the top).

I reflected for a long moment on her good questions: Does institutional perpetuity actually create perpetual impact? How might your (I imagine she’s referring to foundations’) impact change if you were to spend more, or even spend everything?

It was a surprisingly reflective end point to a journey that started out very whimsical in nature. I appreciated a quiet pause in my whirlwind tour that took roughly 7 minutes.

So I end today’s blopping adventure with a deeper understanding of the vast universe of the blogosphere. I notice there are some truly deep wells, and sometimes shallower ones at the other end of a click through, and do not too harshly judge one over the other. There’s a lot of room here in cyber space.

I am humbled to re-establish a personal presence in this constantly flowing and growing ocean of discourse and am now inspired to lead the charge for the remainder of TWI’s 2011 blog-spectations.

p.s. = After completing this post, I was curious about whether or not I actually coined the term “blopping,” and while a google search did not elicit any other relevant hits on it, I was amused to find the following definitions:

"Blog hop, also known as blog hopping, is to move from one blog after another to read the entries or to leave comments." (bloggossary.com)

"Blog hopping is not surfing the net and reading some blogs here and there at random. Blog hopping is when you find a few blogs that you think are really cool, written by people you can really relate to and you visit them regularly. These people feel a special bond towards each other and visit and comment on the blogs in their circle daily!" (from Urban Dictionary.com)

8 comments:

Lily said...

I love the term blopping. Thank you for sharing. Coming to you from Jerusalem, I am suspended now in deep thoughts about the challenge of creating a more sustainable and peaceful world...and still pondring Gladwell's article and the critiques it has provoked...more on that soon, I hope.

Allie said...

Pia - thanks for your feedback on the Case Foundation blog. We try to feature a healthy mix of short content along with more thoughtful pieces, as we've got an appetite in our audience for both types of content. That said, the Scott Case talk was referencing a presentation he did at the NextGen:Charity conference, which is available in its entirety here: http://nextgencharity.com/talks/scott_case_put_your_charity_out_of_business. All the best, Allie Burns, Case Foundation

The Whitman Institute said...

Allie - I appreciate the variety within the Case Foundation blog and also your link to Scott Case's fuller piece. Thank you!

The Whitman Institute said...

Lily - Thank you for visiting with us here and I look forward to seeing more of your reflections from travel and whatever the Gladwell article and dialogue has sparked for you.

John Esterle said...

Pia,

I like blopping too. And glad you have the picture of the frog as that's the first image that came to my mind. And then I thought of lily pads and look who your first response was from!

Anyway, I liked the variety of links you provided and the way you walked us through the process. It was a good prompt to make blopping more of a routine practice for me.

Cheers,
John

Britt Bravo said...

Thanks so much for blopping over to Have Fun, Do Good!

The Whitman Institute said...

John and Britt,

Thanks for stopping by! Hope this kick starts a rich series of TWI blog conversations for 2011.

Pia

sem said...

Pia --

Well done. Hope I have a moment soon to join you in your new adventure of Blopping. se

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