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What form should a government blog take?

Republished from eGovAU.

There’s an excellent and very active discussion over at Adriel Hampton’s blog regarding, Templating a Government 2.0 Blog.

The discussion ranges beyond the pure technical and moderation challenges of establishing a blog (which are very easy to overcome) and into the mindset of government.

In fact my view of the discussion is that setting up and running a blog is easy – changing government’s approach to support blogging is the tough part.

Fortunately there are now many excellent examples of well-established government blogs so it is clearly possible to change government mindsets.

As a side issue, per Phillip Sheldrake’s post at Marcoms professionals, Continuous engagement… the death of market research, it is important to differentiate between a blog and market research, or as is very clearly stated in a post over at Online Consultation, Market research is not community engagement.

Blogs are designed to continually engage and live for a sustained period of time. Market research generally takes place periodically, occurring over shorter periods.

So you’re establishing a ‘blog’ simply to ask questions for a limited period, you should clearly consider its goals and whether you’re simply using a blog-like format for market research, or are actually created an ongoing dialogue with your audience – a blog.

The difference in goals may influence your approach in order to maximise the effectiveness of the medium, and avoid audience confusion when audience expectations may not be met.

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