Monday, October 19, 2009

Images in your blog

In a recent talk I gave, I recommended using images to spice up your blog. I think it's great, and I often include images in my posts where I can. I typically grab screen shots, or use pictures I have, but I have linked from the Internet.

However someone asked me about copyright. My reply was that linking an image from another site should protect you from that. There was a case that went to through the courts that held a link, meaning a hot link (using the "img src=" tag), wasn't a copyright violation. But copying the file to your service and using it, was a violation.

However a few other people posted links to complaints people had made about hot linking, saying it was "bandwidth slurping or stealing."

I can see both points, and so I'm not sure what the proper thing to do is. I'll say this:

  • If there's a copyright notice, like on a photo or cartoon, don't use the image.
  • If someone complains, take down the image or link.
  • If it's a large site, like Amazon, use a link, but give credit to them. Amazon actually allows you to save their images off to your server.
  • If it's a small site, ask them.

That's probably the best solution. I think that I'll give credit on future photographs that I use in my writings and copy them to my server.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Networking with no need for a job

I wrote an editorial recently about networking, and why it can be important. The focus was about finding out about opportunities that might be out there for future jobs. I think with the economy in shambles, and lots of people out of work, it was a good way to highlight how you might find a job. You might not, but I think most people would rather have another safety net for their jobs if they can.

However in the comments, someone pointed out a few things I hadn't thought about. They mentioned four places where you might benefit from networking in your own career:
  • You might hear about a new technology that interests you. Or might further your career
  • You might hear about a business opportunity because of a problem with a competitor.
  • You might hear about someone having issues and be able to help them.
  • You get out of the office.
In terms of your physical resume, the first or second one might be something that helps you, but the last two are items you can bring up in interviews that show off some breadth and depth to your career. I'd make a note of them, blog about them, keep them handy as stories that can make you a more attractive employee.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Why Blog? (or write? or speak? or lead?)

This short piece has a nice summary of the reasons that spending time doing any of these extras. You do this type of stuff at work, or at least your employer wants you to do it, so showing that you can do it is a great leg up on the competition.