New address: 24 Farnsworth Street, Boston, MA 02210-1409.
Before sitting down to write your first post, consider the following:
What is the purpose of your blog?
Your purpose may be
to explain Unitarian Universalism, to offer pastoral messages, to discuss
denominational issues, to address social justice problems, to share information
about what is happening within your congregation, or to publicize a particular
campaign or program
Who is your intended audience?
Potential audiences may include congregants, colleagues in ministry or
professional leadership, lay leaders, newcomers to Unitarian Universalism, local
press, and other Unitarian Universalist blog readers and writers. Once you have
identified your intended audiences, you can tailor your posts with them in
mind. (See footnote 1.)
Who will own your blog?
You may choose to write a personal blog, where you speak only for yourself.
In this case, you may purchase and own the domain name, hosting plan (if
needed), and other blog elements.
Or you may choose to create an institutional blog, where you speak on behalf
of a congregation, organization, or committee. In this case, the purchase and
ownership of the blog’s domain name, hosting and other elements may fall to the
It may be helpful to include a written disclaimer on your blog clarifying
whether you are writing in a personal or institutional capacity, so that readers
understand who you are representing in your writing. (See footnote 2.)
How often will you post to your blog?
Consistency is critical to a successful blog. Readers will look forward to
your posts, and will be disappointed, concerned, or just plain turned off if you
suddenly vanish from the scene.
Decide on a posting frequency to which you can consistently adhere. The
optimal posting frequency is probably between once and twice a week; this is
frequent enough to retain your readers, but not so frequent that you will have
to sacrifice quality for quantity.
What tone will your blog have and how will that make readers
The design of your blog, your title, your writing style, and other elements
contribute to your tone and impact.
How will you make sure your blog is a safe space for you and for
A code of conduct, clearly stated in advance, can set the expectation for how
readers will treat you and how they will treat one another. Consider how you
will respond to comments or other communications that express hatred or
disrespect, or are threatening. Remember that this is your blog; you have the
right (and responsibility) to remove content that you consider threatening to
your own safety or to the safety of other participants.
What kinds of information about yourself and about others
will you need to keep confidential?
Consider your obligations to congregants, colleagues, family members and
other people who have entrusted you with confidences.
Also keep in mind what kind of information about your self and your family
can be left off the blog. For example, you don’t need to announce the exact
dates that you will be out of town!
Produced by the Office of Information and Public Witness's Unitarian Universalist Blogging Resources Project.
For more information contact pw_specialist @ uua.org.
This work is made possible by the generosity of individual donors and congregations.
Please consider making a donation today.
Last updated on Sunday, June 19, 2011.
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