Tips for Conference Bloggers

Some time ago I blogged about my first live blogging experience. One of the problems I experienced was writing about figures and pictures. I wrote:
Then there’s the diagrams, figures, etc. How do you get them in a post?! I don’t know. Sometimes I tried to describe them in words. Taking pictures of slides is a way to do it. But it’s a lot of work, getting the picture on your pc, uploading it to Blogger, etc. (The pictures that were taken will be on flickr soon, someone promised.) Does anyone have tips on this?
So, when TED blog posted about a guide titled "Tips for Conference Bloggers" by
Ethan Zuckerman and Bruno Giussani, I was curious what they would say in general about live blogging and, specifically, if they would answer my question.
The guidebook is very insightful, well written and I nicely illustrated. It gives many practical tips (- I wish I had read this before the conference I blogged). They only briefly address blogging about pictures and the like. They say:
Don't be afraid to create a narrative saying "He shows a slide with data on ..." or "She walks on stage carrying a big suitcase" or "He shows a YouTube video" etc.
This is what I did and it works. But I was wondering if someone has any other experiences with blogging about figures, pictures, etc. Maybe Zuckerman and Giussani have them and would like to share them?
Another thing that triggered me when reading this guide was: Where do you write/prepare your post? I didn't write about that in my post. They say: Use a text editor. That's also what I started out doing. I used Word. But my experience is that when you copy-paste the text to the blog, all kinds of markup comes along with the text. Which resulted in me removing all the markup before publishing... So, I started blogging directly in my blog. That worked much better for me. What could also work is to blog in 'plain text' files.


  1. Hello Samuel,
    thanks for picking up the "Tips". Actually, there aren't many other ways to deal with pictures/slides than the ones you mention. Take pictures and upload them to Flickr or another photosharing site, or to the photogallery of your blog, or just insert some of them into the post. Yes, it's labour-intensive, pure multitasking. However, it's very unusual to need to capture many slides: often, all you need to do is capture one or two images that are really key to illustrate the speech or its main point, as I did here with a slide by E Oster:
    and here with an image of what was going on on stage the other day in Zurich:
    Moreover, we probably haven't stressed enough that posts can be revised/updated afterwards. It is increasingly common for speakers to release their slides after a talk, and for conference organizers to release the videos of the speeches -- and you can add a link to them when they become available.
    But you're right: version 2.0 of the "Tips" will have to include more about pictures and slides, as well as about video and audio blogging.
    Thanks, Bruno

  2. Hello Bruno, Thanks a lot for your comment. It helps to know you and others also have this problem. And telling how you cope helps anyway. Look forward to version 2 of the guide!


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