Community Blogging and why you shouldn’t give a &^%$ what anyone thinks

Background

I have a Ph.D in Chemistry (yay me…). I spent 3 years making many previously undiscovered compounds and characterized them! What I created and the papers I published were no use to anyone as far as I knew at the time – but in the future if someone else who I will never know needs to create a chemical with specific properties, my papers are out there and will help. In the same way that my research depended on those who came before me – my research will help those who come after me. It was the purest form of research. There was no company sponsoring it, needing results to justify their investment. It was funded by a purpose and a desire to further knowledge – which is what I did………That mindset is how I approach blogging.

Community Blogging – why?

Why do people blog? There are many reasons…..and you know people who fit these categories:

  1. Egotistical desire to let everyone else know how awesome they are
  2. People who are insecure and need a voice……
  3. People who are naturally sharing individuals who truly care about increasing the communal knowledge
  4. People who are trying to get ahead and make themselves stand out in a tight job market
  5. People who are all of the above in some way shape or form depending on day/mood/alcohol or caffeine intake

This post is aimed at the staggering amount of Notes/Domino people who are doing really cool &^%$ every day and want to share but have way to many inhibitions to do so. “Noone cares”, “I can’t write”, “I would be wasting my time” – whatever!

Don’t be selfish – you learned from others after all….

Don’t be so selfish and keep everything to yourself………after all you are reading this and you know the benefit of learning from others – give something back once in a while. Call be a raving socialist but I believe that we as a whole community can be better as a whole when everyone shares their knowledge. You learned from others and took their ideas and modified them to make it your own………….

I think (as the title suggests) you need to understand is that it doesn’t matter what anyone else thinks about your blogging – it is all about what you think and more importantly about what you do to share it.

Even if it is as simple as – I came across this cool idea the other day but I don’t know what to do with it, people will read it, people will contribute, people will benefit and people will make you better.

Blogging is easy

WordPress is free – takes 5 minutes to set up
PlanetLotus.org – takes a few minutes and an email to get registered – if you need help buzz me – marky @ thiswebsite.com

To all those people who have thought about it and wondered who cares? Stop giving a crap about who cares and start sharing………

  • Find a topic which interests YOU (for me jQuery and User Experience)
  • Write about it (Just like I tell my kids – the more you write, the better writer you will be)
  • Don’t stress – you are not going to get criticized about how you write
  • Do it (as the slogan goes)

Why my blog?

My blog is purposefully not full of business speak – I can do business speak but I think it is harder to read as a community blog. I started this blog for two reasons:

  1. It  forced me to learn XPages which is something I felt I needed to do to get ahead
  2. I wanted it to help me get ahead! and it worked! – not because it made me any smarter, but it made more people aware of my skillset.

I don’t care if people read the blog or not (liar) and I more importantly want to give back to a community which I have been taking from for over 10 years and anything I can do to help another developer is time well spent.

There is no bigger rush than knowing that something you wrote about helped someone else – try it, you’ll be surprised!

Don’t worry about what other people think……..

If you want a voice but don’t want to manage a blog, let me know and I will help you publish.
If you have a voice – use it.

Stop giving a &^%$ what people think about what you say – you’ll be surprised how appreciative they are that you took the time to do something for them !

 

Do it !

17 thoughts on “Community Blogging and why you shouldn’t give a &^%$ what anyone thinks

  1. For a moment, I was inspired to action, and then I remembered that I don’t give a $%^& what you think. 😉

    (kidding, of course)

  2. Nice Post Dr Marky. I’m curious what made blog this?

    Nathan (That’s Mr Freeman) begged me for a long time to blog and share, but I always found a reason to be too busy and kept myself in this little bubble of “What I know and learn I’ll take to my grave”. Then one day I saw the light and started blogging on BleedYellow.com.

    What amazed me before I started blogging, was the willingness of the online community to help me out without knowing who I am or what I plan to do with the knowledge given.

    Now I preach knowledge sharing in my company and it has changed us for the better.

    Kudos 🙂

    • John – internal conversation with Kathy Brown actually – this isn’t aimed at any one individual or anything like that – more a case of as a general rule of what is holding talented people back from broadening their skill set, starting to blog and making for a better community. Kathy has many ideas on the “what you can do” and my slant was more on the “why you should do”.

  3. The willingness to share time, talents, and code is what makes our community so great and has helped me on more occasions than I can count. It can be scary to put yourself out there but the benefits greatly outweigh the reward. Thanks for all of your contributions!

  4. Marky,
    Great Post. I would just add a couple of things that I commonly hear when I talk to people and preach the “start a blog” idea.
    1. My stuff is too basic. I’m sure it’s been talking about before.
    2. I have things to share, but it’s either not done, or I don’t really know if it’s the “right way”

    To which I call “crap” on both arguments. For item 1, I don’t care how basic something is or if it’s been talked about before. If it’s “new to you” then it’ll be new to someone else. And if 5 people covered the same thing? Who cares? Another voice doesn’t hurt and the more coverage the easier it’ll be able to find via searching.

    Regarding item 2. You don’t need to blog a “perfect” solution. Just share what you know. Odds are someone hasn’t gotten even that far yet. And if there’s a better solution our there? Guess what. Someone will likely tell you that in the comments and explain it to you. That’s the whole “social” and “collaboration” thing at work.

    In this “technical world” there is no reason not to blog and every reason to blog.

  5. Another couple of reasons. When I started blogging I soon had some very illustrious names, including Nathan, adding comments. I found their comments very useful. If people see you helping others, they’re more likely to take their time to help you. And sometimes a short comment on someone else’s post with additional info is better and easier for future developers to find than writing your own post.

    And on more than one occasion I’ve Googled (other search engines are available!) for a solution and been referred back to my own blog, where I blogged the solution I need some time ago. Our brains have a fixed capacity and don’t have a great search engine. The internet keeps growing and has decent search engines if you know what to enter. Use them. Blogging will save others time and frustration and will probably also save you time and frustration as well.

  6. Great post. I’ve been teetering on the edge of starting a blog for a while now (category 2, for the record), and I think I needed a kick in the right direction. I have now officially moved from the ‘considering’ stage to the ‘agonising’ stage. Five minutes to come up with a catchy domain name, design a banner and choose a wordpress theme that makes you happy? You obviously don’t know me. 🙂

    Cheers!

  7. Excellent post, and yes I’m 1 through 5 😉

    Another valid reason to start blogging et al is that you never, ever have to update a resume again. I’ve not done one (or more correctly Lisa hasn’t done one for me) in at least 5 years. As I like to tell people, there is a Jake Howlett in all of us, so let it out. The very first blog comment or email you get regarding a post you’ve done is very rewarding. Not Mother Teresa rewarding, but rewarding nonetheless.

    And if you ever dreamed of presenting at (not) Lotusphere or any other venue then the track managers are all the more likely to select you for further consideration *if* they know who the hell you are……

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