Play by Today's Rules, or Change the Game?

A Debate

Blog Her 2005
56 minutes, 25.8mb, recorded 2005-07-30
Charlene Li and Halley Suitt
There is a world of difference between an A-list blogger and a mom who is writing a blog for friends and family. At least, most people would assume this is the case. In this debate (moderated by Lisa Stone) from the BlogHer conference, Charlene Li and Halley Suitt discuss the differences and similarities between big name bloggers and small scale writers.

In a group that is sharply divided over the question of whether having a lot of traffic even matters, this discussion touches on a number of contentious topics. Some participants question the relevance of A-list bloggers, other argue that if you want to play in the big league you have to follow the rules. Others question whether blogging even has rules at all.

While blogs written by women are not filling the ranks of blog search engines' top 100 lists, the BlogHer conference and this panel answers the question of where the women bloggers are. They are in all areas of blogging, with varied opinions, views and goals. And while some are working the system by playing within the rules, others are starting their own game.

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Charlene Li is principal analyst on the Devices, Media, & Marketing team of Forrester Research. Ms. Li examines the ways new technology will affect how companies deliver information, content, and advertising, and how these changes will affect businesses that provide these services. Ms. Li's current research agenda focuses on marketing trends, search engine marketing, media site design, local media, social networking, blogs, RSS, politics, online recruitment, and consumer portals. Ms. Li oversees operation of Forrester's San Francisco office.

Prior to joining Forrester, Ms. Li was publisher of interactive media for Community Newspaper Company, where she started its award-winning Town Online web site. In addition, Ms. Li served on the board of directors for the Newspaper Association of America's New Media Federation. Before working for Community Newspapers, Ms. Li was at the San Jose Mercury News, where she managed new product development. Ms. Li is a magna cum laude graduate of Harvard University and holds an M.B.A. from Harvard Business School.

Halley Suitt is the author of the weblog Halley's Comment, and blogs on Tom, Worthwhile Magazine, Personal Democracy Forum, Misbehaving.Net among others.

She wrote the first Harvard Business Review case study on blogging in September 2004, called "A Blogger in Their Midst" exploring the assets and liabilities of having a blogger in your company. She's the Writer-in-Residence for the National Center for Women and Information Technology.

Ms. Suitt has worked in conference planning, sales and marketing at Harvard Business School Publishing, TTI Vanguard and Tom Peters Company. Her personal consulting clients have included Bob Metcalfe, Cap Gemini Ernst & Young, Deloitte, and Monitor Consulting. She started her career in search technology with Lexis/Nexis, Reuters and Dow Jones. Ms. Suitt has been quoted in The New York Times, Newsweek and Fast Company and has also appeared on Oprah. She speaks at conferences on business and blogging in the US and internationally.


This presentation is one of a series from the BlogHer 2005 Event held in Santa Clara, California, July 30, 2005, and was recorded by Susan Kitchens.

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This free podcast is from our BlogHer series.