Live blogging is the new thing for bloggers to do. It isn’t particularly useful unless you are actually blogging a live event, but if you are, it is an excellent way to generate some buzz around your blog. It is also an excellent way to draw new readers to your blog, and this is especially true if the event is very popular within your niche. The point is, live blogging is a really interesting concept if done correctly.
Most recently, blogs like CNET have dedicated resources to cover the WorldWide Developer’s Conference live. Other places like Engadget, Gizmodo, and Wired also participated by live blogging the conference.
There are several tools you can utilize to start live blogging today. That is what I will be discussing now.
Cover It Live
Cover It Live is a service which allows you to take any existing page and make it into a creative and unique live blogging experience for you and your readers. You sign up for an account (for free), and after filling in some information, you are able to setup a live blogging session.
It requires about a minute to setup your live blogging session—requiring a title, date, time, and time zone—and then you are provided with a small amount of code that can be placed where you want the viewer to see the live blogging take place. It can be placed pretty much anywhere that any normal content can be placed, but this area must support IFrames.
Additional features include the ability to add panelists and producers, allow people to be notified of when the live blogging session begins, have readers leave comments, insert polls, display advertisements, and share other forms of media like images, videos, and audio.
When all is said and done, you are left with a window which represents a chat room. This area is the place where you can, essentially, do your live blogging. There is no refreshing required by the readers, and this is one of the most important features of Cover It Live.
This is certainly one of the more simpler and effective ways to put on a live blogging event.
Check the bottom of this page to see what Cover It Live looks like.
SubEthaEdit, a tool I recently discussed here at Performancing, allows you to edit any document in real-time with collaborators. While, in itself, not being a complete solution for live blogging, it is an excellent tool to collaborate in a live blogging event.
Multiple users could join an editing session and write/edit the document together with ease. The process is easier than you would imagine, but once you see it in action, you quickly realize the true potential. However, as far as live blogging, this is where the tool ends on its usefulness. You could take the document and paste it to a server, and, truth be told, it is better than nothing at all.
SubEthaEdit is only useful for those of you working in a group of people covering the same event. It only solves part of the problem though, and, in many aspects, if you are willing to sacrifice control, Cover It Live might be the better solution.
WordPress, Drupal, and most other CMSs
For most of us, WordPress, Drupal, Blogger, Movable Type, and other various content management systems will be what we have to work with. While each of these systems should support Cover It Live, it might be in your best interest to cover an event by constantly editing a dedicated page/post within the CMS. It certainly isn’t the prettiest or most efficient way to handle this—it makes collaboration fairly difficult—but you work with what you are given; no one can doubt you for that.
Live Blogging on Performancing
I decided to create a live blogging session for Performancing with Cover It Live. Check back here around 1:00 PM EST. I don’t really have a topic, but I’ll try to make it somewhat interesting!
If you have any experience with live blogging, please let everyone know how it went. Any problems? Did it help drive traffic to your blog?