BlogCamp: Bruno Giussani — Bondy Blog Story [en]

[fr] Bruno Giussani nous raconte l'histoire du Bondy Blog. Naissance d'un média qui est devenu national, mais de la perspective des banlieues.

*notes from blogcamp.ch presentation. may be inaccurate.*

[Bruno Giussani](http://www.lunchoverip.com): special projects for [l’Hebdo](http://www.hebdo.ch) => involved in [Bondy Blog](http://yahoo.bondyblog.fr/) thing.

Bruno Giussani speaking about Bondy Blog

**The Story**

Riots for 3 weeks. 9000 cars burned. 2921 people arrested. Outskirts (suburbs).

Special reporters flocking there from everywhere, and then disappeared (as soon as the curve of violence started going down).

Suburbs: journalists stay in a nice hotel in Paris, eat there, go out reporting during the day, then back to nice hotel. Don’t actually *stay* there.

L’Hebdo did things differently: chose Bondy, one town in France, to do old-fashioned reporting. They sent their 20 reporters there (weekly rotations). Set up an office in the local football warehouse thing, slept there, with a DSL connection.

Objectives:

– write about the situation in that city for the magazine
– blog between magazine issues

What happened?

– journalists used to a weekly rythm started reporting on stuff on the blog they would never have talked about. “Smaller things” which are part of Real Life and never ends up in the press. Or big things (“Les filles de Bondy parlent”) which fired national controversy.
– journalists would come back completely enthusiastic (journalistic freedom recovered) when they left because they “had to”

Everybody wrote about this story. Old media. Curious about what is going on in the blogosphere but don’t know how to handle it. And suddenly this small magazine does something and everybody wants to copy/learn/understand. (Here, being “Swiss” had an advantage.)

Once the newsroom ran out of journalists, what to do? Successful blog, tons of comments… can’t let it die. Instead of sending people again, reached out to young people in Bondy to see if they would take over.

Brought them all to Lausanne for a week of blog/journalism training, then were given the password to the blog and were sent back. Midway between classical blogging and journalism. Have a weekly meeting, etc.

About a dozen bloggers now, covering their life. For the first time, this 50’000 person town has a local publication. Telling their story in their own voice.

Started doing reverse reporting (sending their people to rich neighbourhoods in Paris, for example).

Financed by turning part of the content of the first year of blogging into a book.

Important consequence: the banlieue had a voice at the beginning of the presidential compaign! Dec. 15, Bondy Blog guy asks Sarkozy for his phone number at a press conference, and actually gets it!

Sponsored by Yahoo France now. Have been building a network of correspondants in 15 different banlieues in France. A national media from the banlieue perspective!

Journalism in the P2P world is not about antagonism (old vs. new, professionals vs. amateurs, paying vs. free, controlled vs. open) but it’s hybrid, being complementary.

**Discussion**

Roughly 6000 visitors a day when they switched to Yahoo.

Background: where did the idea come from? came up during a news meeting, but the year before they had a kind of blogcamp for the newsroom.

New projects in this direction? L’Hebdo launched [8 blogs](http://blogs.hebdo.ch) since then. Has influenced how the journal thinks.

Bruno is a little more radical about how magazines should do things *(steph-note: hope I understood this right)*: shouldn’t have a traditional website (but journalists should blog, of course, and put the magazine content online for free), but should invest heavily in this kind of operation, **including training**. (Throwing blogs at people doesn’t work, we’re starting to know it.) Big problem in the newsroom: publication brand vs. personal (journalist) brand.

Bondy blog (network) become a sort of training ground for banlieue people to become recognised as contributors, and Bruno guesses that probably some of them will be hired by “old media” once the elections are over.

Bruno: l’Hebdo never planned for all that. It just happened, organically.

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Multilingual Proposals (Reboot, BlogCamp) [en]

The famous conference [reboot](http://www.reboot.dk/listpublish-63-en.html) will take place in Copenhagen on 31.05-01.06. [I’ll be attending](http://www.reboot.dk/person-471-en.html).

I’m also going to make a proposal for a talk (as the [(un)conference format](http://www.reboot.dk/article-203-en.html) encourages this). I’m being a bit shy about [putting it up on the reboot site](http://www.reboot.dk/listpublish-189-en.html) before I’m happy with the title and description, so for the moment it’s a Google Doc tentatively titled While We Wait For The Babel Fish.

Those of you who know me won’t be very surprised to learn that it’s about multilingualism online. By “multilingualism” online, I’m not only talking about [localisation](http://climbtothestars.org/archives/2007/02/24/english-only-barrier-to-adoption/) or [stupid default languages](http://climbtothestars.org/archives/2007/03/04/not-all-switzerland-speaks-german-dammit/), but mainly about what happens when one wants to get off the various monolingual islands out there and *[use more than one language](http://climbtothestars.org/archives/2004/07/11/multilingual-weblog/)* in one place, for example. How can we help multiple languages coexist in a given space or community, as they do at times in the offline world? Can the tools we have help make this easier?

Another thing that interests me is this “all or nothing” assumption about knowing languages (when you have to check boxes): I wouldn’t check a box saying I “know” Italian, but I can understand some amount of it when it’s written, if it’s necessary. What are we capable of doing with that kind of information? [Read the draft](http://docs.google.com/Doc?id=ddcrwvm8_16d3fhsz) if you want more.

I’m also proposing a session at Saturday’s [BlogCamp in Zürich](http://barcamp.ch/BlogCampSwitzerland) which will be around similar issues, but which will focus precisely on the topic of [multilingual blogging](http://climbtothestars.org/archives/2004/07/11/multilingual-weblog/).

Feedback on these ideas (and anything here) is most welcome. Is this interesting?

**Update 19.03.2007: [proposal is now on the reboot site!](http://www.reboot.dk/artefact-773-en.html) Don’t hesitate to leave comments there.**

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Bloggy Friday ce vendredi! [en]

[fr] Bloggy Friday is this Friday! Sign up!

Eh oui, pour changer, je me suis laissée avoir par le temps, de nouveau. J’ai [annoncé la soirée sur Facebook](http://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=2245070602), par contre — comment, vous n’y êtes pas? Il faut [y remédier tout de suite](https://register.facebook.com/r.php).

Donc, bref, ce vendredi, 20h00 (pas le temps de mettre ça sur upcoming juste maintenant), Café de l’Evêché, inscriptions par ici. Je mettrai à jour la liste des participants ici même.

**Seront là:**

– bibi
– [Bertrand](http://ch.concept.ch.bleublog.ch/)
– [Julien H.](http://julienhenzelin.typepad.com)
Sarah malade 🙁
– [Anne Dominique](http://annedominique.wordpress.com/)
– [Yann](http://www.sans-savoir.net/)
– [Alain](http://www.agauchetoute.info/) *(+ 1, 2, 3 invités mystère peut-être pour le dessert)*

**Pas là, snif:**

– [Yoan](http://yoan.dosimple.ch/blog/) *– collision de fêtes, mais peut-être pour le dessert?*
– [Sylvie](http://sfreymond.name/) *– aile cassée :-(*

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The Podcast With No Name (Steph+Suw), Episode 2 [en]

[fr] Nouvel épisode du podcast conversationnel que je fais avec mon amie Suw Charman.

Long, long overdue, here is Steph and [Suw](http://chocnvodka.blogware.com/blog/)’s Podcast With No Name, episode 2, February 15th, 2007. Some rough shownotes, with some links. Hope you enjoy it, and let us know what you think. We’re down to 35 minutes! *Show notes might suffer updates…*

* conferences: [LIFT’07](http://www.liftconference.com/blog/) and [Freedom of Expression](http://www.freedomofexpression.org.uk/workshops/47)
* not everybody has the internet (God, I need to stop laughing so loud when we’re recording)
* mobile phones in other cultures (e.g. Nigeria)
* “technology overload” at LIFT’07 [turned into “internet addiction”](http://climbtothestars.org/archives/2007/02/09/technological-overload-panel/) (interesting [Stefana Broadbent](http://www.liftconference.com/2006/doku.php/people:speakers:stefana_broadbent)
* note-taking on a computer: expected in some contexts, but feels really out-of-place in others (cultural issue)
* do we end up publishing our handwritten notes? trade-offs: handwritten and rewriting vs. direct blogging ([Steph’s crappy workshop notes](http://climbtothestars.org/archives/2007/02/07/martin-roell-getting-started-in-consulting-lift07/))
* scanning vs. [photographing written material](http://flickr.com/photos/bunny/94971868/), document management and shredding
* GTD status update ([inbox zero](http://www.43folders.com/izero/)…)
* [FOWA](http://www.futureofwebapps.com/) coming up and other fun London stuff
* Wedding 2.0 will be blogged on [CnV](http://chocnvodka.blogware.com/blog/), but will there be a webcast?
* technology as a way to stretch our [Dunbar number](http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dunbar’s_number), wedding 2.0 with IRC backchannel and crackberries galore
* the [Wedding Industrial Complex](http://trailkev.wordpress.com/2007/02/10/the-wedding-industrial-complex/), trying to find an affordable venue in Dorset
* IRC or SL would be cheaper, but is SL a registered venue?
* physical words for “virtual” places
* gap between us heavy users, and people who get a few e-mails a day, book holidays online and that’s it
* exploring how new tools could help us — most people aren’t curious about new stuff
* winning over new users: finding holes in people’s processes
* [Facebook](http://facebook.com) is really cool, very usable, and for keeping in touch with people you know (has smart walls and smart feeds)
* who’s on Facebook? on the non-desire to join new social networks…
* [LinkedIn](http://www.linkedin.com/) for business
* Facebook as a mashup to keep up with what your friends are upto — but isn’t that what blogs are for?
* outlet overload, tools need to talk to each other ([holes in buckets](http://climbtothestars.org/archives/2007/02/13/please-make-holes-in-my-buckets/)), profile multiplication, Facebook share bookmarklet to “push” stuff
* clumsy wrap-up and episode three when we manage!

Did you miss [episode 1](http://climbtothestars.org/archives/2007/01/23/stephsuw-podcast-first/)?

**Note:** PodPress seems to have collapsed, so here is a [direct link to the 14Mb mp3 file](http://climbtothestars.org/files/20070215-steph-suw-2.mp3) just in case.

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Events in WordPress [en]

[fr] Prise de tête pour trouver un moyen d'utiliser WordPress pour afficher des événements (des billets spéciaux, mais pour lesquels on précise aussi une date de début et de fin d'événement). Il faudrait qu'on puisse afficher les "événements encore pas terminés" sur une page spéciale.

Deux plugins m'offrent des solutions partielles, mais je suis incapable de les transformer en solutions totales. Toute aide serait bienvenue.

Besides using WordPress as a blogging tool, a client of mine would like to use it to display a page of upcoming events. I’ve dug out a number of plugins which *somewhat* do the job, but getting things to work exactly as we want is proving to be a pain in the neck.

As I’ve been stuck on this for a few weeks now and still see no light, I’m offering this problem to the collective mind out there in hope that a bright solution pops up somewhere before we go live (which is… very soon — hear my desperate plea for help).

**Here’s what we want**

* events should be posts (this rules out [Shrikee’s Events Plugin](http://www.sothq.net/projects/events-plugin/))
* events have a start date, and an end date — time is unnecessary (this rules out [RS Event](http://www.sargant.com/blog/wordpress-plugins/rs-event/))
* events should show up in the normal flow of posts and on their own category page (we don’t want them on the home page, but I can exclude the category manually, so that’s a non-issue)
* we should be able to display upcoming events on a WordPress page (I’ll stick whatever code is needed in the template for that page) — “upcoming”, here, meaning events whose end date is not yet past.

**Partial solutions**

At first, I thought about using [upcoming](http://upcoming.org/) or [eventful](http://eventful.com/), but for quite a few reasons this won’t work out in our situation.

[Event Calendar](http://wpcal.firetree.net/) seemed like a good candidate, although we didn’t really need the “calendar” itself. I hacked the layout of the event posts so they displayed OK. However, the main bit is missing. Event Calendar [provides a way](http://wpcal.firetree.net/advanced-queries/) to list all the events “after today”, by calling http://blog.address/?ec3_after=today for example. Unfortunately, this doesn’t work on our setup (probably something we did to the rather hacked theme. I’ve had a look at the source code but couldn’t really figure out what happened when that variable was passed, so was unable to reproduce anything ressembling it in a Page template.

Another problem is that this will not show events which have started yesterday but which are not yet over, if I’m not mistaken.

Last but not least, we have two event subcategories, so I’d have to create two (or even three) separate event pages — but I guess that if I manage to make one, filtering posts by category shouldn’t be too hard.

Another solution would be to use [Posts Expire and Posts Begin](http://wunder-ful.com/wordpress-plugins) [as described in this forum post](http://wordpress.org/support/topic/106025) I stumbled upon yesterday. Again, these plugins provide a way to call “posts which have not yet expired” with a particular URL: home/?orderby=post_end_date. Again, I haven’t manage to dig out the code and stick it in a Page template — trying to rewrite a pretty URL to that one is source of much hair-tearing upon this server I have very little control on, and I haven’t found a way to make it work.

The other problem I’d have to work around if using these plugins is that expired posts are not displayed in the blog anymore. I’m not sure what code in the plugin takes care of that, but it would have to be commented out.

**Help**

So, I have two partial solutions here, but I’m stuck making progress on either. Do you have any ideas which could help me out — either to make one of my partial solutions a working one or to find a third one?

I’d really *really* appreciate help on this one. Thanks a lot.

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Travel Adrenalin Rush [en]

[fr] Projets de voyage: 28 mai - 5 juin, Copenhague pour la conférence reboot. Puis un ou deux mois à San Francisco (encore à déterminer) dès le 18 juin. Décision pas facile, parce que je dois me décider vite (sinon je perds l'option) et que ce sont des billets non remboursables et non modifiables.

On the way back home from judo by this bright sunny springy afternoon, I decided it was high time to hop in at the travel agent’s my brother had recommended and give a little bit of substance to my travel intentions.

Well, oh my! I wasn’t quite expecting as much substance. I’ve got a pre-reservation for [San Francisco](http://climbtothestars.org/archives/2007/01/26/back-to-san-francisco/) (June 18th to August 19th — two months!) and one for Copenhagen (May 28th to June 5th), for [reboot](http://reboot.dk/) (is reboot happening this year?) Both are quite cheap, but the downside is that I have to give confirmation very soon (3 days for SF, one for Copenhagen) and that there is no flexibility in the dates (I can’t decide to fly back a few days later), and if I cancel I still have to pay the full price of the ticket.

I’m thinking now that maybe two months in San Francisco is a bit of a plunge. There are two issues:

– money (most of my paid work is done face-to-face — speaking engagements, consulting, training — so I can’t really “do stuff through the internet” for my clients here while I’m away)
– the cat (he’s 10 now, I’m very attached to him, and a bit torn between leaving him here and being afraid something will happen to him when I’m gone — I have a good cat-sitter *and* a good cattery, so there are options open, or taking him with me and having him not be able to go outside in SF, depending on where I’m staying)

So, maybe one month would be more reasonable. Specially as I’ve been told summer could be quite cold (50F=10C?! can anybody confirm that?) in the city, whereas it’s beautiful in Lausanne during July and August. And maybe come back in autumn? Heck. I need to go to Montreal and India too.

Now, just in case I *do* decide to come over to SF for a month, starting June 18th… Are there any events taking place mid-July that I should know of? As I said, once I fix the return date, it’s set in stone — and I would hate to be biting my fingers off because I’m leaving *just that one day early* and I could have known…

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LIFT'07 Swiss TV Coverage [en]

[fr] LIFT à la TSR.

Here’s a [short piece on LIFT’07](http://www.tsr.ch/tsr/index.html?siteSect=500002&bcid=480986&format=450&vid=7511077) that was on the Swiss News last Thursday, and [another one with an interview of Laurent](http://www.tsr.ch/tsr/index.html?siteSect=500002&bcid=480970&format=450&vid=7509224). *Beware. Window resizing and RealStuff to be expected.* ([More videos here, click on “Vidéo”.](http://www.tsr.ch/tsr/index.html?searchString=lift&siteSect=608000)).

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LIFT'07 Social Networking Map Experiment [en]

[fr] Si vous étiez à LIFT'07, remplissez le questionnaire pour l'expérience de Social Networking Mapping!

I can only encourage you to [participate in the LIFT’07 Social Networking Map Experiment](http://www.liftconference.com/flow/?p=47) if you attended the conference. It takes a little while to complete, depending on how extroverted you are, I guess. And if you hang out with [evil supernodes](http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Supernode), too.

Listing the people I knew before the conference wasn’t too hard, though of course I had to plough through [the list](http://www.liftconference.com/2007/people/participants). Here are the names I came up with:

*Henriette Weber Andersen, Jean-Christophe Anex, Bieler Batiste, Yoan Blanc, Florent Bondoux, Stowe Boyd, Raphaël Briner, Stefana Broadbent, Lee Bryant, Marie Laure Burgener, Riccardo Cambiassi, Jérôme Chevillat, Marco Chong, Matthew Colebourne, Samuel Crausaz, Thierry Crouzet, Pedro Custodio, Nicolas Dengler, Jens-Christian Fischer, Antonio Fontes, David Galipeau, Bruno Giussani, Tanguy Griffon, Matthias Gutfeldt, Laurent Haug, Peter Hogenkamp, Dannie Jost, Christophe Lemoine, Thomas Madsen-Mygdal, Yann Mauchamp, Geneviève Morand, Philippe Mottaz, Hugo Neves da Silva, Nicolas Nova, Bjoern Ognibeni, Roberto Ortelli, Jean-Olivier PAIN, Marc-Olivier Peyer, Bernard Rappaz, Andre Ribeirinho, Martin Roell, Pascal Rossini, Robert Scoble, Rodrigo Sepulveda Schulz, Joshua Sierles, Nicole Simon, John Staehli, Elisabeth Stoudmann, Sandrine Szabo, Olivier Tripet, Guido Van nispen, Benjamin Voigt, Alfonso Von Wunschheim, Ellen Wallace, Bertrand Waridel, Mark Wubben, Chris Zumbrunn, Jan Zuppinger*

“New people” I met at the conference was more difficult, firstly because I didn’t get the names of everyone and business cards are only *so* helpful, particularly when you don’t have any for the people you talked to, and secondly because *many* people did not include a photo in their profile on the site, or any information about themselves. Here’s the list I managed to compile:

*Jeremy Allen, Paula do O Barreto, Nuno Barreto, Brian Cox, Florian Egger, Ramon Guiu Hernandez, Noel Hidalgo, Lisette Hoogstrate, Tom Klinkowstein, Trine-Maria Kristensen, Maya Lotan, Gia Milinovich, Glenn O’neil, Nortey Omaboe, Michele Perras, Ivan Pope, Derek Powazek, Thomas Purves, Dieter Rappold, Colin Schlueter, Maryam Scoble, Sebina Sivac-Bryant, Jewel THOMAS, David Touvet, Remo Uherek, Sarah Wade Hutman*

A much smaller list, as you can see. Well, as I knew quite a lot of people to start with, I guess it’s expected to be short — but I’m sure this is at most the two-thirds of the people I met. If we talked and you’re not listed, let me know!

One methodological problem I can see with [the survey](http://optima.benchpoint.com/optima/SurveyPop.aspx?query=view&SurveyID=185&SS=S1OXZSiJ) is that “already knew” and “met for the first time” are not clearly defined. I’ve taken a really wide interpretation of those expressions for this survey. I’m not sure absolutely everyone on my first list would consider they “know” me. Or if I haven’t met a person yet but we’ve got common friends and I’ve followed a lot about them, do I “know” them? Ditto for “met for the first time”. I’d interacted with [Gia](http://www.giagia.co.uk/) online after LIFT’06, but this is the first time we talked offline, for example.

Anyway… interested in seeing what will come out of this. Please take the survey!

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Que d'anglais [en]

[fr] Just an explanation to my French readers about the amount of English here recently. Has to do with a post-LIFT'07 effect and the hard time I have coming back to "where we are with blogs and stuff in Switzerland". (Answer: frustratingly behind. Yeah, I'm grumpy and certainly a little unfair.)

Oui, je sais, je néglige à nouveau mes lecteurs francophones et j’écris des tartines en anglais. Je reviens de la [conférence LIFT’07](http://liftconference.com) (l’année dernière, [LIFT’06](http://climbtothestars.org/archives/2006/02/) avait quelque peu changé ma vie), des rencontres plein les yeux et des idées qui résonnent encore dans les oreilles.

La langue que j’utilise ici dépend de l’humeur, du contenu du billet, du public imaginé. Là, j’avoue, je suis un peu coincée en anglophonie. Un peu difficile, après un [workshop magistral donné par Stowe Boyd](http://climbtothestars.org/archives/2007/02/07/stowe-boyd-building-social-applications/) et [toute une série d’intervenants fascinants](http://lift07infrench.wordpress.com/ “Comptes-rendus en français.”) de remettre les deux pieds en terre vaudoise, où les journalistes tentant de se mettre au blog [essaient d’épingler les blogueurs pour une tournure malheureuse](http://vaud2007.ch/index.php/2007/02/09/101-improfessionalisme) (ah oui, c’est Stephanie sans accent si jamais, puisque vous tenez à la précision), les [cours d’initiation aux blogs](http://formationblogs.wordpress.com/) sont annulés de façon répétée par manque d’inscriptions alors que la demande est là, pourtant (appels, interviews, cartes de visite, demandes… et j’en passe), les gens veulent des blogs mais quand même pas trop “blog” (mais parlez en “je”, bon sang, ça veut pas dire que vous devez “raconter vos vies”), où [internet fait peur](http://flickr.com/photos/julianbleecker/385705252/) et où les journaux, en passe d’épuiser le filon, [tentent de faire les gros titres avec la fin des blogs](http://letemps.ch/template/tempsFort.asp?page=3&article=199713).

Donc, vous me pardonnerez, mais juste là, je retourne explorer [Facebook](http://facebook.com), garder un oeil sur l’évolution des [blogs d’Intel](http://softwareblogs.intel.com/) qui ont profité de mes services plus tôt cette année, parler boutique avec [Headshift](http://headshift.com/), lire [Stowe](http://stoweboyd.com/message/), [Bruno Giussani](http://www.lunchoverip.com/) et [David Galipeau](http://galipeau.blogspot.com/), rester en contact avec [ma tribu de LIFT](http://flow.liftconference.com/), commencer à travailler à mon futur livre sur les ados et internet (surtout: sur quel blog l’écrire), mettre mon nez un peu dans ce que fait [Derek Powazek](http://powazek.com/) avec [JPG Magazine](http://jpgmag.com/), guetter les dates de [reboot](http://reboot.dk) et planifier ma [prochaine expédition à San Francisco](http://climbtothestars.org/archives/2007/01/26/back-to-san-francisco/)…

Un peu grinche, [la Mère Denis](http://www.pascalrossini.com/wordpress/?p=97), et probablement un peu injuste aussi, du coup. C’était le coup de gueule du jeudi après-midi. Vous en faites pas, amis romands — je vous aime quand même.


Merci à noneck pour la photo.

Pour me faire pardonner, allez, quelques [photos-souvenirs](http://flickr.com/photos/tags/lift07) ([de moi](http://flickr.com/photos/bunny/sets/72157594537203311/) et [d’autrui](http://flickr.com/photos/bunny/favorites/)) de LIFT’07.

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Please Make Holes in My Buckets! [en]

[fr] Tour d'horizon de mes différents "profils" à droite et a gauche dans le paysage des outils sociaux (social tools). Il manque de la communication entre ces différents services, et mon identité en ligne s'en trouve fragmentée et lourde à gérer. Ajouter des contacts en se basant sur mon carnet d'adresses Gmail est un bon début, mais on peut aller plus loin. Importer ses livres préférés ou des éléments de CV d'un profil à l'autre, par exemple.

[Facebook](http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=503315010) is [Stowe](http://stoweboyd.com/message)’s fault. [Twitter](http://twitter.com/stephtara) was because of [Euan](http://theobvious.typepad.com/). [Anne Dominique](http://annedominique.wordpress.com/) is guilty of getting me on [Xing/OpenBC](https://www.xing.com/profile/Stephanie_Booth). I can’t remember precisely for [Flickr](http://flickr.com/photos/bunny) or [LinkedIn](http://www.linkedin.com/in/sbooth) or — OMG! — [orkut](http://www.orkut.com/Profile.aspx?uid=7955153206158244373), but it was certainly somebody from [#joiito](http://joiwiki.ito.com/joiwiki/index.cgi?IrcChannel). The culprits for [Last.fm](http://www.last.fm/user/steph-tara), [DailyMotion](http://dailymotion.com/Steph) and [YouTube](http://youtube.com/profile?user=Steph “Even got there early enough to grab ‘steph’ — now I get password reminders almost everyday, great…”) have disappeared into the limbo of lost memories. [Kevin](http://epeus.blogspot.com) encouraged me to [sign up for a good dozen of blogging platforms](http://climbtothestars.org/archives/2004/12/11/hosted-blog-platform-test-write-up/), open a [MySpace account](http://myspace.com/stephtara), and he’s probably to blame for me being on [Upcoming](http://upcoming.org/user/94465/). As for [wordpress.com](http://steph.wordpress.com), I’ll blame [Matt](http://photomatt.net) because he’s behind all that.

Granted, I’m probably the only one responsible for having [gotten into blogging](http://climbtothestars.org/about/ “Story here, abbreviated version.”) in the first place.

Let’s get back on track. My aim here is not primarily to point an accusing finger to all my devious friends who introduced me to these fun, [addictive](http://climbtothestars.org/archives/2007/02/12/addicted-to-technology/), time-consuming tools (though it’s interesting to note how one forgets those things, in passing). It’s more a sort of round-up of a bunch of my “online selves”. I feel a little scattered, my friends. Here are all these buckets in which I place stuff, but there aren’t enough holes in them.

Feeds are good. Feeds allow me to have Twitter, [del.icio.us](http://del.icio.us/steph), Flickr, and even Last.fm stuff in my blog sidebar. It also allows me to connect my blogs to one another, and into Facebook. Here, though, we’re talking “content” much more than “self”.

One example I’ve already certainly talked about (but no courage to dig it out, my blog is starting to be a huge thing in which I can’t find stuff I know it contains) is contacts or buddies — the “Mine” in [Stowe’s analysis of social applications](http://climbtothestars.org/archives/2007/02/07/stowe-boyd-building-social-applications/). I have buddy lists on IM and Skype, contacts on Flickr and just about every service I mentioned in this post. Of *course*, I don’t want to necessarily have the same contacts everywhere. I might love your photos on Flickr and add you as a contact, but not see any interest in adding you to my business network on LinkedIn. Some people, though — my **friends** — I’ll want to have more or less everywhere.

So, here’s a hole in the buckets that I really like: I’ve seen this in many services, but the first time I saw it was on Myspace. “Let us peek in your GMail contacts, and we’ll tell you who already has an account — and let you invite the others.” When I saw that, it scared me (“OMG! Myspace sticking its nose in my e-mail!”) but I also found it really exciting. Now, it would be even better if I could say “import friends and family from Flickr” or “let me choose amongst my IM buddies”, but it’s a good start. Yes, there’s a danger: no, I don’t want to spam invitations to your service to the 450 unknown adresses you found in my contacts, thankyouverymuch. [Plaxo](http://www.plaxo.com/) is a way to do this (I’ve seen it criticised but I can’t precisely remember why). Facebook does it, which means that within 2 minutes you can already have friends in the network. Twitter doesn’t, which means you have to painstakingly go through your friends of friends lists to get started. I think [coComment](http://cocomment.com) and any “friend-powered” service should allow us to import contacts like that by now. And yes, sure, privacy issues.

But what about all my **profile information**? I don’t want to have to dig out my favourite movies each time I sign up to a new service. Or my favourite books. Or the schools I went to. I mean, some things are reasonably stable. Why couldn’t I have all that in a central repository, once and for all, and just have all these neat social tools import the information from there? Earlier today, [David](http://galipeau.blogspot.com/) was telling me over IM that he’d like to have a central service to bring all our Facebook, LinkedIn, OpenBC/Xing, and MySpace stuff together. Or a way to publish his CV/résumé online and allow Facebook to access it to grab data from it. Good ideas, in my opinion.

I’ll mention [OpenID](http://openid.net/) here, but just in passing, because although in my dreams in used to hold the promise of this centralised repository of “all things me”, I don’t think that it’s what it has been designed for (if I get it correctly, it is identity **verification** and doesn’t have much to do with the **contents** of this identity). [Microformats](http://microformats.org) could on the other hand certainly come in handy here.

So, please, make more holes in my buckets. Importing Gmail contacts in sticking feeds here and there is nice, but not sufficient. For the moment, Facebook seems promising. But let me use Twitter for my statuses, for example, or at least include the feed somewhere (I can only include one feed, so I’ve included my [suprglu one](http://steph.suprglu.com/), but it has a huge lag and is not very satisfying). Let me put photographs in my albums directly from Flickr. Talk with the profiles I made with other similar services. Grab my school and work info from LinkedIn and OpenBC. Then make all this information you have about me available to republish how I want it (feeds, feeds, feeds! widgets! buttons! badges!) where I want it.

Also, [more granularity](http://climbtothestars.org/archives/2006/12/12/you-should-twitter/). Facebook has a good helping of it: I can choose which type of information I want to see from my contacts. I can restrict certain contacts from seeing certain parts of my profile. I’d like fine control on who can see what, also by sorting my people into “buddy groups”. “Friends” and “Family” as on Flickr is just not enough. And maybe Facebook could come and present me with [Stowe-groupings](http://climbtothestars.org/archives/2007/02/07/stowe-boyd-building-social-applications/) of my contacts, based on the interactions I have with them.

Share your wild ideas here if you have any.

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