Blogs are web logs that contain information about specific topics, produced by one or more authors, and viewed in reverse chronological order. They can be used as daily diaries or social commentaries.
Examples of Blog Posts
Safefood is an Irish organisation which promotes awareness and knowledge of food safety and nutrition issues. The safefood blog has been active since 2010 and provides articles with advice and news on food safety, healthy eating, food hygiene and other topics.
The Food Standards Agency Chief Scientist Andrew Wadge regularly posts in the Hungry for Science blog.
Advantages of Blogs
- Good for informing and engaging with interested parties about both risks and benefits.
- Good for sharing reflective, opinion pieces that provide situational overviews.
- Good for sending messages that remain pertinent over time (archives will be accessed unlike in Microblogging sites).
- Literature suggests that during crises, more people read blogs and in some cases, assign a higher degree of credibility to coverage reported in blogs than in conventional mainstream media.
- Domain experts, journalists and the general public are likely to use blogs both to communicate their views and to source of information.
- Monitoring of these online conversations can provide insight into consumers’ perceptions of food issues and allows detection and tracking of impending issues and on-going debates. Monitoring is also useful for evaluating the public mood and perception as it develops during an event or crisis.
- Medium time, staff effort & cost.
Disadvantages of Blogs
- Limited networking components although Facebook or LinkedIn extensions can cover this aspect.
- Blogs are appropriate for quick updates but are not as immediate as microblogs.
- Blogs might require additional resources if conversations scale up.
- Inappropriate for one-way communications - communicators must be prepared and have the resources to engage, explain and answer questions that may arise.