Saturday, May 21, 2005

Spent the afternoon with 3 chatty, lively schoolgirls. Took them to the official launch of the National Interschool Blogging Champoinships 05 at the Esplanade. These girls are the team who will mastermind a group blog to represent our college in the contest. As a tutor advisor, I have no editorial rights over the content of the blog. I'm just around to safeguard that the rules of the game are upheld.

The event was hosted by DJ Jamie who was taller than I had imagined. Not that I make it a habit to imagine her, mind you. My girls took a couple of snaps with her and got her autograph too.

The idea behind this contest is to see how schools can tap into blogging as an outlet for the voice of our youth. Whenever it comes to asking kids what they think about issues, they generally clam up and pretend to be dumb about things, but give them the time, the leisure and the opportunity to write and sometimes interesting things come to light.

Judging criteria are quite basic. Make the blog attractive, keep the content interesting, bring in lots of visitors, and erm... use good English (at least on the part of the main contributors to the blog; nothing we can do about the unwashed masses that leave ungrammatical comments on our entries). 9 colleges are participating, our ambition is to be in the top 5 after the 1st round of judging is over.

Well, if that's the case, I told the girls to make sure their posts remain interesting enough to reward the visitor every time he or she loads up the page. Then, and only then, will people bring other people to drop in and say hi!

The girls are now working on creating this blog so when it's ready (hopefully real soon) I'll link to it. Maybe I can entice some of you to have a look? We could use the support!

After the event, the organizers arranged a simple reception. Free-flow post-mix drinks; finger sandwiches; delicious, hot, crispy samosas; and deep-fried wontons with Sinsin chilli sauce dip. A nice, polite way to end the proceedings, but the girls were still hungry, having skipped lunch to attend the launch so I took them to Thai Express where they tanked up on different forms of Thai rice. The pineapple type, green curry type, shrimp paste type and the olive type. Yummy.

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