9 posts categorized "blog talk"

September 20, 2009

Blog Fix Finished

I hadn't realized, until today, that I needed to do a few extra things to make Google happy after I switched a few of my blogs over to one of the Typepad Advanced Templates. I noticed recently that every entry for my blog was showing up under the root URL (not too helpful if the entry in question was very old). As if anyone was going to scroll back through countless entries until they found the entry in question....

I recently followed the instructions above for One Woman. One Blog. and that took care of the problem quite nicely. (Maybe that will even solve some of the difficulties my blogs have had in showing up at Technorati.) Every once in a while I try to trouble-shoot these technical issues on my own blogs. Then I get busy again and move on.

Good thing there are technical gurus who troubleshoot these issues on my blogs at ParentCentral and Yahoo Canada Lifestyle, or you'd never be able to find anything I write....

August 04, 2009

Mom 2.0: Meet the Mommyblogger: An Overview of My Essay in Mothering and Blogging: The Radical Act of the MommyBlog

My essay "Mom 2.0: Meet the Mommyblogger" appears in Mothering and Blogging: The Radical Act of the MommyBlog, edited by May Friedman and Shana L. Calixte (Toronto: The Association for Research on Mothering/Demeter Press, May 2009). Here's a brief excerpt which highlights some of the key points raised in my essay.

MotheringandBloggingLg "The online world of mothers is being transformed by marketers with their own specific agendas. These marketers—who are eager to tap into the $1.7 trillion market that mothers represent—have the budgets to ensure that they are able to tap into the conversations of mothers, wherever those conversations happen to be taking place online. Web 2.0 sites are eager to find ways to generate revenue from their operations and marketers are the source of that revenue, so their needs will often eclipse the needs of mothers in online communities....

"Moms have always been generous about sharing their wisdom and ideas with other mothers, but now a third party is privy to those conversations. In the world of Web 2.0, there's a third party sitting (or eavesdropping) at the table—a marketer who is taking notes and looking for ways to use mothers' ideas to sell products back to mothers. More often than not, moms are not being compensated for these intellectual property contributions in any meaningful way. Rather than paying cash -- the traditional currency of business -- marketers and the mega-corporations that they front for offer fleeting fame and freebies. On a per-hour basis, these 'pay rates' can amount to lower rates of compensation than the rates paid to workers in third-world sweat shops --working conditions these mega-corporations to go great lengths to distance themselves from.

"Horizontal violence* between mothers online is the result of the lack of respect shown to mothers by other online users. This type of hostile activity is at its rawest in the blogging community ("the wild west") as compared to in the highly moderated (and much less authentic) world of social networking sites aimed at mothers. When horizontal violence does occur on social networking sites, the social networking tools that are built into the site architecture can be used with merciless effectiveness (at least until a site moderator steps in). Rumors and misinformation can be forwarded to an entire network of contact and on-site and off-site site a mouse click. Deleting someone from a list of friends can be accomplished with equal ease (and, in many cases, that former 'friend' won't even realize that they've been de-friended).

Perhaps the most important conclusion that web-savvy mothers must keep in mind is that horizontal violence will become less of a problem when the status of mothers and women is improved both online and in the real world. Until this happens, it's important for mothers to acknowledge its existence and to work towards collective solutions. In "Horizontal Violence in the Workplace," Carolyn Hastie recommends a series of strategies that appear to be just as practical and relevant to the world of mothers: recognizing and acknowledging that horizontal violence occurs between mothers and using the term 'horizontal violence' to name the problem; raising awareness of this issue and addressing the cultural issues that allow horizontal violence to continue to be a problem between mothers and women; speaking out against instances of horizontal violence whenever they occur; addressing individual attitudes and behaviors; and practicing self-nurturing and self-care so that each woman ins able to 'do the things that help [her] to be healthy and happy in all aspects of [her] human-ness.' Once she applies that age-old common sense to dealing with a computer-age online problem, Mom 2.0 will have more to give her Web 2.0 girlfriends. And it's a 100% product-free solution to boot."

View the full Table of Contents for the book.

*Note: The term horizontal violence is used when members of groups with low status display hostile behaviors toward their fellow group members as opposed to lashing out at their oppressors.


Mom-101: The Year that Shame Died: Mom-101 writes: "Much to my surprise however, what turned out to be the problem at BlogHer was not how the marketers acted, but how so many bloggers acted. Without pulling punches, I will say it was shameful...I am in no way saying that popular bloggers don't like free stuff or that you should be ashamed for wanting some free dish soap. I publish a site that gives away products daily and I love how happy it makes people. What I'm saying that blogging 'success' shouldn't be defined by the amount of stuff you get. It's about what you put out, not what you take in."

Mom-101: Blog With Integrity: We're Taking Our Community Back: Mom-101 writes: "We've put together Blog with Integrity, a voluntary pledge, complete with blog badge, for any and all bloggers (not just parents) who want a way to show their readers, marketers, the PR community, and certainly the press, that we are committed to integrity, responsibility and disclosure, and that a few bad apples do not speak for all of us. Not even close."

Mom-101: Yep, I'm a Mother. Got a Problem With That?: Mom-101 describes the disrespect that mothers have been receiving from certain members of the marketing community post-BlogHer'09.

July 22, 2009

Self-Improvement Blogs, Parenting Blogs, and Twitter

Window I received a note this morning letting me know that The Mother of All Blogs has been included in a list of 100 Powerful Blogs for Your Self-Improvement. Nice to know. Thanks for letting me know, Amber.

In other blog news, I'm blogging daily over at ParentCentral.ca this summer. I'm offering tips to help you have your best summer ever with your family. You can dive in any time and catch up on the tips that have you've missed.

I'm also continuing to blog weekly over at Yahoo! Canada. You never know what I'm going to post about over there. It's as much as a surprise to me as it is to you. (I pick my topics at the last minute.)

In between blog posts, you can catch up with me on Twitter: @themotherofall (parenting news), @anndouglas (misc everything), @litmags (small and literary magazines), @bookpubs (book publishers), @writers2follow (writers to follow).

Photo Credit: Ann Douglas, 2009.

November 12, 2008

Riding the Waves

Apparently there's a gender gap when it comes to economic worries. That's the scoop from the American Psychological Association, who found that 84 percent of women -- as compared to 75 percent of men -- had fears about what the future might hold for the U.S. economy.

If you want to cause a near panic, try yelling "breastfeeding mother" in a swimming pool in Toronto. Apparently, that's enough to scare some people silly.

November 10, 2008

BabyTime: Good Time

Askme I just spent three whirlwind days at the BabyTime show in Toronto. I spent part of my time hanging out in the Ask Ann Douglas kiosk (picture Lucy's "The Psychiatrist is In" advice stand -- but without the 5 cent fee). The rest of the time, I led rounds of pregnancy bingo, baby bingo, or parenting bingo. Parents competed for the chance to win fabulous prizes -- those fabulous prizes being copies of my books (I was the one providing the prizes: what do you want?) -- and a good time was had by some/most/all.

It was a fun way to spend a weekend. I got a chance to visit five relatives and one friend in my so-called spare time (that spare time occurring before 10 am or after 7 pm each day, you have to understand).

And today....well, today I'm totally exhausted. But it was totally worth it. I can catch up on email and the rest of my life tomorrow.

Before I left town on Thursday, I blogged at ParentCentral.ca about baby planners (the baby-world equivalent of a wedding planner) -- and, over at Yahoo! Canada, I wrote about the importance of reacting with compassion, not judgment, when tragedy strikes a family with a troubled teen.

October 30, 2008

Mother Musings and More

Parentcentrallogo My latest column over at ParentCentral is a rather from-the-heart post about my metamorphosis as a mother. (Hey, if you're going to do a job like mothering for 20+ years, you'd better learn a few things along the way. I mean, it's not like it's the best paid job on the planet.)

Anyway, while I was searching for relevant links to add to the post (there's nothing more boring than a link-free blog post, after all), I stumbled upon this infertility Q & A I was asked to answer for Sweetmama.ca. The site is edited by Nadine and boasts contributions by some very talented contributors, whose names will be familiar to people who've been reading this blog (meaning its previous blogspot incarnation) for a long time. Nadine even has a piece from my writer-buddy Dr. Joey, who I will continue to adore despite the fact that she disses coffee in this column.

And speaking of nice new parenting sites on the Canadian block, I really like what Sarah and Minnow are doing with ShareSavvy.ca. Moms are naturally inclined to want to share their wisdom with one another. Why not make it easier for moms to find great advice by providing the technical tools to allow this to happen?

October 27, 2008

Errors, Omissions, and, Please, Bring Me Up to Date on Your Life....

1sign2 First things first. I've created a parenting resources section, which contains a lot of the content which used to be housed on the old blog. This way, I could make room for a lot of new content. (See the top right-hand corner of the blog for a list of pages.) If your link was on the old blog, would you please check to see if the link is still up-to-date? If you know your link should be there (because you know I adore you), but it's not, would you please add it to the comments section of that page? That way, I can tackle all the cleanup all at once (one of the reasons I switched to TypePad: to make my blogging life a whole lot simpler).

Secondly, it's almost a year to the day since my son's Aspergers syndrome diagnosis. I'm starting to feel like my life is getting back on track. (That's just part of the story, but it's enough for you to grasp in one sentence!) I'm finally starting to reach out to the outside world again after a year of quiet reflection and a lot of thinking and learning on many, many fronts. (I'll be writing a lot about this, both on and off the blog.)

But here's my question for you. How have you been? What's new with you?

ParentCentral.ca: Potty Training Math

Womanmanarrows Is there a potty in your future? (Or, rather, your toddler's?) If so, you might want to sign up for this quick and almost pain-free crash course in potty training math.

October 26, 2008

Halloween Trash Talk

"It's a testament to the miracles of modern packaging science that they can get so little product into so much packaging (the classic case being those miniature bags of potato chips that are so full of air that they seem destined to become airborne at any moment).

It just doesn't seem right to hit the stores with reckless abandon, loading up on all kinds of Halloween "bling." So what's an environmentally conscious mom or dad to do, given that the kids still want to have their fun — and only the dentist down the street can get away with handing out toothbrushes and dental floss?

Here's what I hope will be the start of a Halloween mom-i-festo — a refusal to inflict any more useless and tacky trash on the landfills of the nation. Care to add your two cents or more?"

- From Green Halloween: Start Thinking About Eco-Friendly Alternatives to Scary Halloween Waste by Ann Douglas

Blog Talk: The Tricky Task of Choosing Halloween Treats