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I'm curious if there's enough interest here for there to be a blog.

Here's the list of what needs to be figured out:

  1. Raise the idea on the child meta. A community blog needs the involvement of community members. These blogs don’t exist to be the personal blog of a community member. They are both for and run by the community. It needs to be something the community collectively wants and will cultivate.
  2. Define the scope and purpose of the blog. Is the blog about the site? Is it about the site’s topic? Is it about the industry around the topic? Keep in mind the audience of your community and their interests. Another generic blog about may not be all that interesting. A community blog should be interesting to both current members and potential new members.
  3. Recruit contributors. Who will write entries for the blog? Starting a blog is a bit like going through the buffet line. Be realistic – don’t let your eyes be bigger than your stomach. Think seriously about if and how often you will be able to contribute a blog post, including research/prep time. The more contributors there are, the less frequently each contributor needs to post. One post a month is a much easier to stomach than a couple posts every week.
  4. Plan a schedule. Given the results of steps #2 and #3, think about a rough idea of a schedule for the blog. Will there be one post a week, posted Mondays? Will there be posts on Tuesdays and posts on Fridays? You don’t need to be pushing out posts daily, but you should post at least once a week.

Links of interest

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Given some of the earlier concerns about site approachability, I think a more "anything goes" RPG blog would be nicely complementary to the main "just the facts, ma'am" RPG Q&A we do here.

In other words, it seems there is a large contingent of potential RPG users who just want to discuss a particular topic, and a blog post would be a great way to do that -- and perhaps gently introduce them to the Q&A.

(comments on blog posts are semi-threaded by default and open to everyone.)

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  • \$\begingroup\$ The blog could cover closed questions that were begging for a discussion. Giving closure to new people who then read and integrate better! \$\endgroup\$ – Pureferret Jan 1 '12 at 19:23
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The question is, will we get enough sustained content? Views on the main site are only ~2500/day which is not high for a blog even if everyone here reads it... I am willing to start in on this if we get enough persistent commitment to content generation, but if it's going to be dilettantes generating 2 posts and then out, it would be best to not start at all.

As I say in the linked related question, if someone has the stick-to-it-iveness to walk us through the getting started steps, then I'll support it and pitch in my own blogging. But I'm not going to drive it to a largely unconcerned user base.

I'm being a little negative in my other comments because I don't personally believe anyone will put forth the effort to take this from "here's a list of ideas that... someone else could post!" to actually getting the blog going, but like I say I will support it if they do, and I'm a pretty experienced blogger. As I have my own blog (well, blogs, I have a professional one too) I don't need the outlet so don't want to drive this, but will pitch in to a community-led effort.

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Topic ideas:

  • Product Reviews
  • Highlighted users
  • Question of the [time period]
  • Upcoming events
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  • \$\begingroup\$ All great topic ideas - do YOU plan to write any of them? If so, good, I'd just note that if you're plugging something for "other people to do" it will certainly fail. \$\endgroup\$ – mxyzplk Sep 17 '11 at 17:42
  • \$\begingroup\$ I would absolutely love to contribute. But I feel that my experience with RPGs as compared to the rest of the community is somewhat lacking. I could write stuff as a fledgling GM figuring things out as he goes without a role model gm. \$\endgroup\$ – DForck42 Sep 17 '11 at 18:02
  • \$\begingroup\$ @DForck42 those could be great articles. You could possibly do some of the historical stuff too? \$\endgroup\$ – C. Ross Sep 19 '11 at 20:46
  • \$\begingroup\$ @C.Ross, what do you mean by historical stuff? \$\endgroup\$ – DForck42 Sep 19 '11 at 21:12
  • \$\begingroup\$ @DForck42 Nothing wrong with a new gamer blogging about it. Your perspectives will be different then that of us grumpy grizzled vets! Plus it's possible that people coming to the site with questions may be new to gaming as well so your insights may be directly on target for them! \$\endgroup\$ – mirv120 Sep 20 '11 at 20:36
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One of the suggestions I have thrown around chat is that a couple of us could do weekly (or monthly or however often) write ups of epic moments from our regular sessions, these may not be a regular feature, or they could be something someone commits to doing after their session every week.

A number of us are active in regular games and would love a vehicle associated with the site to tell our stories and relay our epic victories or epic defeats.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ Only problem with this is that campaign session reports are the second-least popular type of article according to at least one general RPG blog reader survey. \$\endgroup\$ – SevenSidedDie Sep 21 '11 at 17:16
  • \$\begingroup\$ If the point is to provide an outlet instead of creating a high quality content site draw, this might be fine however. And we'd have to decide on which we were doing. I really like the "outlet" approach better because then we're not fretting about vetting authors, needing editors, etc. \$\endgroup\$ – mxyzplk Sep 25 '11 at 12:27
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I ran a D&D blog from 2006 to 2010. Here's my two copper pieces.

A blog will float or sink on the quality and relevance of its content. Merely writing on a webpage isn't enough. If the content isn't something special, you'll never get viewer numbers of any significance, and as a result the contributors will lose their motivation because their work isn't important enough.

Write what you'd be interested to read, not just what you feel like writing.

There are a lot of RPG blogs already. Ask yourself what yours will do better then them.

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    \$\begingroup\$ in this case, it would be an outlet for stuff people want to do, but that is prohibited in the core Q&A rules; it wouldn't be adding more "work" per se but creating a pressure relief valve for something that the community (at least part of it) already wants and can't quite get. \$\endgroup\$ – Jeff Atwood Sep 17 '11 at 7:59
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    \$\begingroup\$ But if it's just a dumping ground for the frustrated, it will be low quality and no one will read it - it becomes a write-only blog which certainly inhibits people from contributing good content. Many of the high rep users already have RPG blogs of their own, as well. If people need an "outlet" I suggest a link to RPG.net. \$\endgroup\$ – mxyzplk Sep 17 '11 at 15:23
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Well, I'd be willing to write every two weeks. Topics I could cover:

  • Things that are working, things that need work in our campaigns (currently Dnd 4e and Dresden Files)
  • Character bio's (I'm thinking 1 per blog or every other blog, these could be quite lengthy. my gf has ~7 pages written about her dnd character, and I've got a few written for mine)
  • Product reviews of whatever we might end up with (ie DnD tiles, minis, suppliment books, character generators, etc.)
  • Character builds
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Topic ideas - we could have a number of blog post serials:

  1. Guidance on rules: we have a lot of posts that have several good answers on how to best interpret rules that could be synthesised into blog posts. This would be something we could do here that is more valuable than a random blog post, because it could, with the right editorial system, be a consensus view. E.g., the participants in How can I make BRP less variable? could write up, I am sure, excellent guidance on how to play these rules and arguments against "dick" GMs. Likewise, we could have a System recommendations series.
  2. Not constructive: We could propose opinion pieces that we think would propose interesting discussion among us that would not fit the Q&A format and would be kicked off with a post a bit too substantial for chat. E.g., https://rpg.stackexchange.com/questions/1229/does-system-matter could be a good discussion starter, perhaps kicked off with an elaboration of Vreeg's first Rule of Setting Design, "Make sure the ruleset you are using matches the setting and game you want to play, because the setting and game WILL eventually match the system." This would give a place to take content that people really want to discuss here, they could be generated from chat.
  3. Irregular tips: Perhaps each week or so, someone could post a couple of the most interesting links they've seen around the RPG world, and the comment thread could introduce more and discuss them. A bit chat-like, but something to keep content bubbling over on the blog.

These series would both provide outlets for content that people want to generate, and provide quality posts that would make for a quality blog. The keepers of the blog keys should be able to get the balance between high signal/noise and a lively throughput of content, I think.

I can think of a couple of things I'd like to work into blog posts, and no doubt if I thought longer, I could find more things. I don't think periods where the blog "fails" is bad, since we have some sort of community here that can give the blog a second and third fresh start.

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