Continuing assignment: Professional blog

At the beginning of the semester, you will be pitching an idea for a blog to your instructor.  This blog should be one that you would be interested in authoring professionally.  Examples of authors that have turned something akin to a blog to their full time job include the following:
Oh yeah, and TMZ.

Other professional blogs are extensions of special interests and/or are done for PR reasons.
We will be discussing the technical side of blogs in class, and will go through how to create a blog at  No worries if you don't know how to create a blog.  If you do know how to blog, the only requirement is that your blog publish an RSS feed (most major blog sites do).

The Pitch:  For the pitch, you will write a quick paper of 700-1000 words which answers the following questions:
  1. What is the topic of your blog going to be?
  2. Why are you qualified to write this blog?
  3. Who makes up your competition (that is, what other blogs on this subject already exist)?
  4. Why is your blog going to succeed in this space?

The Blog:  The blog itself will be evaluated on several criteria.
  1. Do you have 10 or more entries during the semester?
  2. Did you publish continually during the semester?  That is, were seven of your ten (the minimum) blogs published in the last two weeks of class?  If so, that's not good.
  3. Is your information timely, useful, and interesting to your audience?
  4. Did you successfully add connections with social networks?  (We will discuss Facebook and Twitter "web widgets" in class.)
  5. Have you created a blog template whose links position yourself within a web of resources on the topic and builds your personal credibility?
  6. Do you use links strategically in your posts?
  7. Do you use images and embedded videos?
  8. Is your information presented in a formal manner?  (Note that you can be humorous, irreverent, even ditzy while also remaining relatively formal.  Do your posts show forethought and good planning, or do they seem informally slapped together?)
  9. Does the blog's template make the content easy to access?
Though the blog will not be graded until the end of the semester, shortly before our exam period, you must post to your blog frequently and regularly.  Reread criteria number two, above.

You will need to email the URL of your blog to your instructor as soon as you create it [and are reasonably certain you're happy with the topic].