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Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Michelle Obama Watch Goes Live!

The site is not ready yet, but the complaints about the treatment/ depiction of Michelle Obama keep coming in fast and furious. So we are going to go ahead and go live because I can't keep up. Nor do I intend to. I've got a conference to plan.

Michelle Obama Watch is now accepting volunteer contributors. What does that mean? It means that when you see a story or post(s) about Michelle Obama, you log in to the blog and put a brief writeup, a photo, and the relevant links. That's it. You can do it once a day, but you must be willing to chip in at least once a week.

Michelle Obama Watch will become a repository of all of the criticism, praise, and general chicanery thrown at Michelle Obama between now and November. If Barack wins... well we'll cross that bridge when we get to it, but for right now, we are looking at a 5 month obligation. If it has anything to do with Michelle, it will be on Michelle Obama Watch.

If you have not done a google news search on Michelle, she is everywhere right now. So here are some of the ground rules.

1. No electioneering. This site is about the treatment and depiction of Michelle Obama. It is nonpartisan... really a-partisan. Barack has a entire staff of people and $100 million dollars or so to help get him in the White House. This is about Michelle and the media.

2. All posts need to be 150 words or less. This is a news blog, not an analysis blog. If you want to analyze what the media is doing, then feel free to put up a cross link to a longer post on your own blog. This will be strictly enforced. Long-windedness will get you yanked. If you want an example of how much you can do with a few words, go to tvnewser.com.

3. No attacks. Again, just give folks the who, what, when, where, why, and how. I don't have time to try to moderate posts and I will not be answerable for what you say. Again, once you give people the info, feel free to cross link to your own blog post where you let loose.

4. You will need your own image hosting site. If you post images, do not link to an image on another site. That is rude. It takes up their bandwidth and typically ticks them off. You will need to register for one of the free photo sharing sites, flickr and photobucket are popular. I prefer photobucket. Any photos you use will need to be hosted there. You don't need to use photos however, if you do, you need to upload them to your own image hosting site.

5. No you do not have to be a blogger, but you will need to be able to navigate your way around Wordpress. It isn't complicated, but iI will not be doing any technical assistance or hand holding. NONE! I don't have time. Do not send me a single "Gina how do I...." post. Again, do what I did and teach yourself.

6. Give credit to your sources, in particular other blogs. Not only is this good net manners, but it also promotes the blogs when other people see that MOW is linking to their site.

7. Posting, even fifteen times a day, does not grant you any ownership interest in MOW. This is voluntary. You will not get paid. At anytime the site owner ( ie the benevolent dictator) can go in a completely opposite direction and change things up. Again, you can use the site as an opportunity to grow your blog through cross posting and you can feel warm and fuzzy inside for dong good work. That is your only reward.

8. No plagiarism. If you can't come up with 150 original words, then don't post. Be brief and then get the heck out.

9. Don't duplicate. Read before you post. If someone else on the blog covered it already, then leave a comment in the thread. This is your incentive to race to post before someone else scoops you.

10. You are relatively on your own. I don't have time to handhold. If you don't know what your posts should look like, again, tvnewser.com is a pretty good guide. That way we can have a dozen posts a day without the one post taking up the entire page.

11. Link liberally, the more you like to other blogs, the better.

12. The benevolent dictator (that would be me) reserves the right to revise, revoke, alter, expand, change, transform, evolve this list of guidelines at any time, for any reason.

So I have created the site. It is still under construction and I have to add additional widgets and do some fiddling. I thought I would launch this weekend, but y'all are bombarding me with tips so we might as well get started with the posts.

If you would like to be a contributor you can email me at the gmail address in the sidebar and place MICHELLE OBAMA WATCH in the subject line. You will receive more detailed instructions on how to tag and categorize your posts as well as how to make thumbnails appear in the template. Please follow instructions. LET'S DO THIS!

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