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Google’s Blogger Users Can Now Customize Their Designs
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Update: Google has announced tah the Blogger Template Designer is now available to all (not just Blogger in Draft).

Original Article: Google has launched the Blogger Template Designer, a way to customize the look and feel of your Blogger blog.

What is Fair Use? You Tell Us.
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What is fair use? It’s a question that doesn’t seem to go away. Traditional media publications often throw blogs under the bus for borrowing quotes and spreading news to their own audiences. While there are certainly plenty of cases in which blogs do trample on the concept of fair use, to say that blogs in general follow this practice is simply absurd.

Are You Blogging Within Your Fair Use Rights?
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With all of the struggles and controversies surrounding the news industry these days, there is a lot of confusion out there about what falls under fair use and what doesn’t. The more savvy bloggers who have been in the game for a while usually have a better grasp on the concept, but there are still plenty of others who aren’t so well versed. After all, anyone can start a blog, and not everyone comes from a news or legal background.

Twitter Shows Embeddable Tweet Example
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Update: Twitter has made an update to tha post saying, "No, really. It’s very simple. Just a snippet of code you’ll be able to use to generate simple, selectable flat-HTML tweets like the one we used here."

Did You Think Making Money Blogging Would Be Easy?
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Ever since blogging became popular, people have been trying to make a living at it. A few have been successful, but many eventually give up, or if they actually do continue to blog, they aren’t making anything. In a session I attended about blogging at SXSW last month, one of the panelists asked the question, "how many of you have a blog?" Nearly everyone in the room raised their hands. Next, they asked, "how many of you are earning with your blog?" Very few people raised their hands.

Blogging vs. Twitter: It Shouldn’t Be About the Format
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In case you were wondering, Twitter is not killing blogging. No matter how many times this is said, there is still this notion out there that blogs aren’t needed when you can simply express what you’re feeling to the audience who is interested through Twitter (or Facebook or other social networks). The fact of the matter is, yes – you can do this with Twitter or Facebook, but blogs exist just the same, and the blogs and social networks frequently complement one another.

Google Deletes Blogger Posts
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Update: This article is nearly a year old, but pretty much the same thing is happening again (or still). A number of popular music blogs have been removed from Blogger, some are saying without warning. When we covered this before, Blogger Product Manager Rick Klau left us the following comment (as seen in the comments section):

Increase Search Traffic with Horizontal Content
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Those new to blogging or article writing have often been told to focus on one very niche topic. One narrow vertical. That has commonly been considered the way to gain credibility, readers, links, and ultimately traffic, which assuming the blog/site itself isn’t your primary source of income, could lead to sales of your products/services. But is keeping it narrow really the best way to go?

FTC Guidelines Raise Big Blogging Questions
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Update 3: The new FTC Guidelines went into effect this week. A recent WebProNews interview with Wendy Piersall, Founder of the Woo! Jr. Network, looks at some interesting points about them that you may not have considered – some "gray areas" if you will.

Yahoo May Shut Down MyBlogLog Soon
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Update: Yahoo has issued the following statment regarding MyBlogLog’s future:

Google’s Blogger Adds Amazon Affiliate Monetization Option
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Google-owned Blogger has added a new revenue generation option: direct integration with Amazon Associates to search Amazon’s product catalog and add links to products where Bloggers can earn commissions when their readers buy products they recommend.

Technorati CEO Talks State of the Blogosphere
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Update 2: Here is our exlcusive interview with Technorati CEO Richard Jalichandra from the BlogWorld Expo this past weekend:

 

 

 

WordPress Lets Bloggers Help Make the Mobile Web Better
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WordPress has launched a couple of new mobile themes for bloggers who use WordPress.com. The themes are designed to display automatically when the blogger’s blog is accessed with a compatible mobile device.

Making moves to get blogs to display properly on mobile devices is a good move considering recent research, which found that consumers are generally not pleased with the way mobile web sites display.

Technorati Relaunches with Unique Content
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Technorati has launched a new version of its site. Among the changes is a feature that lets users post content directly to the site. This pretty much gives authors a chance to promote their blogs with links from their profile pages, while giving Technorati itself some unique content.

Unemployment and AdSense May Cause Headaches
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Unemployed bloggers are apparently at risk of losing their unemployment checks (or at least having them drastically reduced) if they include ads on their blogs. That is exactly what happened to a woman named Karin, from New York, according to a recent Forbes piece.

Bloggers Can (Not?) Be Fined Up to 11K Per Post for Non-Disclosure
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Update 2: The FTC is now saying that the $11,000 fine is not accurate, at least for the first violation. Fast company got some responses from Richard Cleland, assistant director, division of advertising practices at the FTC, who says:

Six Apart Opens Up TypePad

Six Apart, the creators of TypePad, have launched the TypePad Platform, a set of APIs that allow developers, bloggers, publishers, and corporations use the TypePad "cloud".

Nielsen Says Most Social Media Users Rich and Urban
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Research from Nielsen indicates that wealthier people and people who live in big cities (at least in the US) are more likely to use social networks than people with less money that live in smaller towns.

Nielsen Claritas, a branch of Nielsen that looks at segmentation in consumer behavior, says that there is a "marked difference" in the demographic makeup between the two largest social networks – Facebook and MySpace. According to Nielsen Claritas:

Blogger Gives Commenters Faces
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Blogger has extended the comments feature it annoucned last year, which lets users embed comments and the commenting form below blog posts. The feature has been extended to display profile images next to comments that blog visitors write.

Blogs Can Still Drive Big Traffic
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You would almost think blogging was dead, the way headlines are dominated by Twitter, Facebook, and social media in general. I’ve always considered blogging to be a part of social media anyway, as the commenting factor lends to engagement between author and user.

What is Responsible Blogging to You?
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The Federal Trade Commission has recently taken an interest in regulation of blogs when it comes to bloggers receiving products and writing about them. A lot of discussion has taken place about what it means to blog responsibly.