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Jimmy Leach

Jimmy Leach was once editorial director for digital for The Independent.

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The Independent starts blogging

Posted by Jimmy Leach
  • Tuesday, 25 November 2008 at 10:02 am

It’s an exciting day at The Independent with the launch of Independent Minds, our new comment and opinion platform for Independent journalists  – and users.
 

Regular readers will have noticed that our blogs by the likes of Andrew Buncombe, John Rentoul and more of the finest journalists around are now found on a shiny new blog, with new designs that are, hopefully, a little easier on the eye than the old ones (thanks to our new partners LiveJournal).
 

There’s a new emphasis on the blogs on the cult of the individual, so while there are  a few hangovers from the navigational branding from the old blogs – the likes of Today in Politics was too good to be killed – you’ll find more single-authored blogs than communities. The idea is to centre more on the writer than on the topic.
 

 

Hence, Rhodri Marsden may blog about techy stuff mostly, but the way the blogs are now constructed means he may feel a little more able to talk about football, or Catherine Townsend may talk about property prices. You get the idea –no-one who writes on the blogs need feel restricted about the subject and the navigation across the Independent Minds site is based on tagging as on any pre-set thoughts about a writer’s subject.
 

But this is mere tinkering to the major new aspect of the Independent Minds – and that’s that you too can become bloggers on this site. Just register (with LiveJournal who are providing the back-end to all this) and you can add your voice to the others on this site and share your thoughts with the huge and growing audience the site has. You do have to register, I'm afraid - some may find it a pain, but its mean't to be a community, not a free-for-all. We won't be using your data to spam you with offers from the Independent, you can be sure of that.
 

Letting all and sundry blog under our flag and letting them speak about what they want might be something we regret on occasion– but we trust you. You’re Independent readers after all, you’ll want to debate, not start a fight, and, as the whole thing beds in, we’ll be bringing the user content closer and closer to the centre of the site.
 

Secretly, you see, we don’t think journalists always know more than the readers. We’re looking to you to prove it. And besides – if it gets unpalatable in there, we reserve the right to delete it, as ever.
 

This is just the start of the project – we’ll be looking for more and more ways to improve it, to link it better to the ‘main site’ and for ways to encourage users to make the best of it. Over the next weeks and months we’ll roll out improvements and changes, and we hope you’ll contribute to that process. Add your comments to this blog post, and others in the future, and make your suggestions as to how we and the guys at Live Journal can improve Independent Minds. It’s a forum for your voices, after all.

So get writing!


 

Comments

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Hello
colinb wrote:
Tuesday, 25 November 2008 at 03:41 pm (UTC)
Hello. I've been blogging for some 3 years or more, first on Sky News, then Times Debates (prior to that disastrous changeover with the lime green format) and more recently on My Telegraph. The different sites all have their pros and cons. MyT was fine to begin with, but has gone badly downhill since their original service providers went bust and they sub-contracted to a Stateside outfit. So I'm going to give Independent Minds a try, hoping I don't get pursued here by some of the MyT weirdos. Was it wise to say that? Am I tempting fate? Or will the moderators here deal more severely with the WUMs? We shall see.

Now then, let's see how long it takes for this comment to go up. Hopefully, it'll be instantantaneous. No, on second thoughts, it, and all other comments will be quickly vetted by a sage moderator before being allowed to appear. ;-)
Re: Hello
jleach wrote:
Tuesday, 25 November 2008 at 06:24 pm (UTC)
Oh, and Colin - just to be clear. No payment necessary to get any sort of prominence. If you write something interesting, we'll find you and promote you, don't you worry...

Edited at 2008-11-25 06:25 pm (UTC)
Re: Hello - colinb - Wednesday, 26 November 2008 at 11:02 am (UTC)
Meuse-Argonne.
shanghai7 wrote:
Tuesday, 25 November 2008 at 04:40 pm (UTC)
Hi Colin,This is Shanghai7,otherwise Shanghai or Begbie what with the whole censorship kerfuffle.Let's see how it goes here!Sekmes(Lithuanian for Congrats).
Hello to you both
araminta_hb wrote:
Tuesday, 25 November 2008 at 05:46 pm (UTC)
Now what do we do?
Re: Hello to you both
colinb wrote:
Tuesday, 25 November 2008 at 05:51 pm (UTC)
Hello Shanghai, hello Ara. You know, I have this oh so strange feeling of having met you both in a previous life. ;-)
Re: Hello to you both - jleach - Tuesday, 25 November 2008 at 06:00 pm (UTC)
Re: Hello to you both - colinb - Tuesday, 25 November 2008 at 06:13 pm (UTC)
Re: Hello to you both - jleach - Tuesday, 25 November 2008 at 06:29 pm (UTC)
Re: Hello to you both - low_wattage123 - Tuesday, 25 November 2008 at 06:54 pm (UTC)
Re: Hello to you both - tina_osborne - Tuesday, 25 November 2008 at 07:18 pm (UTC)
Re: Hello to you both - matgb - Tuesday, 25 November 2008 at 11:55 pm (UTC)
Re: Hello to you both - colinb - Tuesday, 25 November 2008 at 07:18 pm (UTC)
Re: Hello to you both - tina_osborne - Tuesday, 25 November 2008 at 07:29 pm (UTC)
Re: Hello to you both - colinb - Tuesday, 25 November 2008 at 07:40 pm (UTC)
Re: Hello to you both - matgb - Tuesday, 25 November 2008 at 11:53 pm (UTC)
Re: Hello to you both - colinb - Thursday, 27 November 2008 at 08:25 pm (UTC)
Re: Hello to you both - matgb - Thursday, 27 November 2008 at 08:36 pm (UTC)
Re: Hello to you both - jleach - Thursday, 27 November 2008 at 08:36 pm (UTC)
Re: Hello to you both - ahmsabina - Wednesday, 26 November 2008 at 03:51 pm (UTC)
Re: Hello to you both - colinb - Wednesday, 26 November 2008 at 08:35 pm (UTC)
Re: Hello to you both - thewhiteowl - Thursday, 27 November 2008 at 07:12 pm (UTC)
Re: Hello to you both - pw201 - Wednesday, 26 November 2008 at 11:43 pm (UTC)
Re: Hello to you both - matgb - Tuesday, 25 November 2008 at 11:56 pm (UTC)
Re: Hello to you both - araminta_hb - Tuesday, 25 November 2008 at 08:46 pm (UTC)
Re: Hello to you both - petite1marie - Tuesday, 25 November 2008 at 09:50 pm (UTC)
Re: Hello to you both - shanghai7 - Tuesday, 25 November 2008 at 10:09 pm (UTC)
Hi there
maleizi wrote:
Tuesday, 25 November 2008 at 08:00 pm (UTC)
I'm pretty new to all this but I need something to avoid work and wanted to write some stuff on China, not up yet but I'll work it out eventually
Re hello to you both
pucini wrote:
Tuesday, 25 November 2008 at 08:01 pm (UTC)
Hehehe, who am I ?

Hello Ara,Lw,Colin,Shangers, JL ?
I have been on the prowl Christina,this site is vast , we can even leave voice recordings and do IM.
Re: Re hello to you both
shanghai7 wrote:
Tuesday, 25 November 2008 at 08:40 pm (UTC)
Pucchini?
X
pucini wrote:
Tuesday, 25 November 2008 at 08:48 pm (UTC)
No darling Pucini , as in Madame Butterfly . Now where are the smilies ?
Shangers
araminta_hb wrote:
Tuesday, 25 November 2008 at 08:50 pm (UTC)
I think I know who Pucini is; she's OK!
Forthcoming events/fixtures
jameswolfe wrote:
Tuesday, 25 November 2008 at 08:56 pm (UTC)
Thurs 24 Nov 08.00pm CST: Live 5 a side debate at Kensington Town Hall:- 'Blogging in a Recession - can we afford it?' (if wet, adjourn to the snug at the Slug and Lettuce)

Sat 29 November 03.00pm BST: IM XI v MyT XI Multi-sports derby at Wembley (first round)


Good luck, Indie. You may need it.

(Anyone seen Shane, yet?).
Re: Forthcoming events/fixtures
pucini wrote:
Tuesday, 25 November 2008 at 09:07 pm (UTC)
Hello Wolfie !

What a great name Slug & Lettuce !
I have found if you click on ' more options, below here, there are smilies.

My computer shop [mac ] thinks they are down market, but I find one can get away with a lot more when a smiley is used.
Re: Forthcoming events/fixtures - ahmsabina - Wednesday, 26 November 2008 at 03:53 pm (UTC)
No sign of Shane
araminta_hb wrote:
Tuesday, 25 November 2008 at 09:01 pm (UTC)
Hey Wolfie: what you doing here dude? Good to see yer!
Re: No sign of Shane
ahmsabina wrote:
Wednesday, 26 November 2008 at 03:54 pm (UTC)
Hello Ara
it is nice to see old friends, I don't feel so lonely now!
sunajniaga wrote:
Tuesday, 25 November 2008 at 09:22 pm (UTC)
Hello, everybody. Backside and I got rather *rse about face and we had to set up a new mail address - the Yanks are blacklisted!! Anyhow (as they say in Montana) we have landed now and look forward to meeting with all our chums.
Smilies
jameswolfe wrote:
Tuesday, 25 November 2008 at 09:27 pm (UTC)
Hey, Puchie

I found the smilies and something else that says 'Pimp your Account', or somesuch. Can't find where to post. Can't find a post. So it looks like this will be it. We'll just have to change the thread carefully a couple of times a day and all should be well.
Re: Smilies
matgb wrote:
Tuesday, 25 November 2008 at 11:58 pm (UTC)
To post:
http://www.livejournal.com/update.bml

Then when you're done it'll give you links. Click your name it'll give you lots of options.

LJ's one of the oldest blogging platforms around (it was set up before the word blogging was invented), so sometimes the navigation is a bit last century. They're spending a lot of money making it a lot easier, and there are huge numbers of people who'll help out.
Re: Smilies - jleach - Wednesday, 26 November 2008 at 12:19 pm (UTC)
Slumming
jameswolfe wrote:
Tuesday, 25 November 2008 at 09:31 pm (UTC)
Hello, Ara

I've no idea what I'm doing here! Unlike me, it's not very user friendly. Cyber quid to the first to get a photo on this blog.
Re: Slumming
pucini wrote:
Tuesday, 25 November 2008 at 09:48 pm (UTC)
Woolfie, that's clever ! can't see how to do that.
If you click my name it will take you to my Journal , I think , it does if I do it.

Where I have designed [ cough] the colour & placed a photo, would you try it for me ?
sunajniaga wrote:
Tuesday, 25 November 2008 at 09:34 pm (UTC)
James, hi! See my journal! Daisy is there.
Here goe the neighbourhood
tmap wrote:
Tuesday, 25 November 2008 at 09:40 pm (UTC)
It took 4 hours to get the verification email - but I got it in the end.

Yo y'all.
Re: Here goe the neighbourhood
pucini wrote:
Tuesday, 25 November 2008 at 09:51 pm (UTC)
Welcome tmap, this is all very ..........strange don't you think ?
Trying a pic
jameswolfe wrote:
Tuesday, 25 November 2008 at 09:40 pm (UTC)
Re: Trying a pic
petite1marie wrote:
Tuesday, 25 November 2008 at 10:02 pm (UTC)
Good evening everyone, is this the new myT then?
Re: Trying a pic - pucini - Tuesday, 25 November 2008 at 10:05 pm (UTC)
Re: Trying a pic - petite1marie - Tuesday, 25 November 2008 at 10:12 pm (UTC)
Re: Trying a pic - pucini - Tuesday, 25 November 2008 at 10:25 pm (UTC)
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