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Great Entries in the Weblog Tools Collection Blogging Essay Contest

Weblog Tools Collection’s ongoing The Blogging Essay Contest continues with some fabulous entries. Two new ones really caught my attention.

Mark Styles of Lambic joins my choir with CAPTCHAs, who needs them?

They’re everywhere, and they’re annoying. They’re called CAPTCHAs and they’ve become a ubiquitous part of blog commenting. Bloggers use them as a quick and dirty solution to an annoying problem without consideration for the annoyance they will cause the reader. I want to persuade all bloggers who are using them to please stop.

The article goes on to clearly explain why and how CAPTCHAs don’t work. So get over it, folks, and kill your CAPTCHAs.

I love blogging about all the different kinds and types of bloggers out there, covering all types of industries, hobbies, and interests. David from Optoblog.com has written Optometrists and Blogging, an interesting and fascinating look at blogging for eye doctors.

The article isn’t really about eye doctors who blog, but more about why they don’t. It’s also a good testimonial for why some businesses don’t, and possibly shouldn’t, blog.

It seems that organizations in the industry heard something along the lines of Scoble’s book which preaches blogging will make your business grow drastically, they tried it out for a while, it probably didn’t bring in the big returns, and so they abandoned their blog.

…Everyone is afraid of lawsuits. What if the information we share with each other gets us in trouble? I think that’s why more medical professionals don’t blog…

In treating a patient, we doctors like to get paid so we can pay for malpractice insurance premiums which covers the risk of treating patients. We don’t get paid for blogging. The last thing we need is the family of some chain-smoking gramma from a different state to sue us out of business.

Aside from medical-condition-related content, what about conversing regarding the ophthalmic product industry? If more optometrists would blog about vendors publicly, then maybe the corporations would know how to make their product better…

…I wish the ophthalmic vendors themselves would start blogs. I would like to read about what they are working on next instead of waiting for a convention or a biased review in an industry rag…But even if the vendors did start blogging, I worry it would be short lived or just considered a cool new way to advertise. A blog should be viewed like having a telephone: just one more needed way to communicate with people. It’s not the savior, be all and end all of a marketing plan. It is one more useful tool of communication.

He makes some very good points, exploring both sides of the blogging fence. While this article is a cry for more professionals to blog, it helps to really examine the reasons why they do, and don’t, blog.

The competition may still be going on, so if you have something to say about blogging, send in your entry now!


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Copyright Lorelle VanFossen, member of the 9Rules Network

Member of the 9Rules Blogging Network

3 Comments

  1. Posted December 5, 2006 at 8:28 pm | Permalink

    I don’t like CAPTCHA. However, I have a contact form (not comment form) challenge question that has totally eliminated SPAM through my site’s comment form.

    Link: http://douglaskarr.com/2006/09/22/wordpress-contact-form-with-spam-protection/

    Rather than an annoying computer generated challenge, you get to type in your own challenge question and correct response. I’ve gotten some great feedback on it. Hopefully, a process like this could be added to comment forms. It’s a little nicer than that impersonal captcha.

    Thanks for this post!
    Doug

  2. Posted December 5, 2006 at 11:50 pm | Permalink

    The last date for entries is the 14th of December.
    Thanks Lorelle :)

  3. Posted December 6, 2006 at 12:17 am | Permalink

    Mark: You are doing a great thing. Thanks!

    Doug: A personal captcha is still a captcha. Kill them all. ;-)


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