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    « PODCAST - #HRHappyHour 264 - Future Trends in Talent and Talent Acquisition Technology | Main | The Geometry of the Deal »
    Tuesday
    Oct252016

    The Carnival of HR and the Old Days of HR Blogging

    I started blogging in about 2007, right about the time I started teaching a course in HR Technology at the Rochester Institute of Technology in Rochester, New York.

    For some reason in my HR Tech class I thought it would be a good idea to make sure the students knew about blogging - how to set up a blog, how to update a blog, how to write on a blog, etc. And in what turned out to be indicative of a few other things I covered in that class, I realized I needed to sort out how to do those things myself before I could teach them to the students.

    And so the first iteration of this blog was launched in 2007.

    Sometime later that year I ran through the same exercise with Twitter. I thought it important to talk about and demonstrate this new thing called Twitter in class, so I had to learn how to use it myself. So in late 2007, my initial Twitter handle, @Sbjet was born. I remember being VERY excited when I crossed 100 followers. That was big time in 2008.

    And something else was big time, at least to me, back in the early days of my HR and HR Tech blogging - the monthly Carnival of HR. 

    I have not written about the Carnival of HR in ages, so chances are some, or maybe even many, folks reading this blog today are not familiar with the Carnival. But back in 2008 and 2009 this monthly collection of the best blog posts from around the HR blogosphere was a really, really big deal. I tried for what seems like ages to get a post of mine included in the Carnival, only to be passed over. 

    I was pretty much unknown, writing a dumb blog about technology and teaching for a tiny, tiny readership. 

    But I kept on submitting a post each month anyway, and one month, finally, one of my posts was included in the Carnival of HR. I wish I could remember exactly when that was, but I do remember being really, really ecstatic about it when I found out, (this has to be the nerdiest thing I ever got excited about). 

    But back then, being in the Carnival of HR felt, at least to me, kind of vindicating. I felt, somehow, that it validated what I was doing in the eyes and opinions of the other HR bloggers who back then I was SURE were all better, smarter, and more popular than I was. I actually think most of them still are by the way.

    And also different back then, was that it really seemed like the smallish number of folks who were actively blogging about HR all would read each other's posts, would comment on them fairly often, and would share posts with each other in old school ways like Email and Google Reader. Sure, Twitter was just starting to become a thing by 2009 or so, but even then, the HR Twittersphere and the HR Blogosphere were pretty much the same group of folks, give or take, and there was (maybe I am being really naive here), a real sense of camaraderie and community there.

    And I guess that is why the Carnival of HR seemed so cool to me back then. It was like a public list of who was in the club, who was doing interesting work, who was contributing and had something to say.  Getting a post in the Carnival of HR meant you were a part of the cool kids, and even at whatever age I was then, still seemed like an accomplishment.

    I kind of miss those days, back when the center of the conversation was actually distributed around the internet on the couple of dozen or so HR blogs that were THE ONES to read then. Lots of them (and their owners), had cool names like HR Minion, Your HR Guy, HR Ringleader, HR Maven, Punk Rock HR, and the HR Capitalist. Some of these names still are active and vibrant in the HR blog world. Some, not as much, or their owners have moved on to new things and new adventures.

    But for me, someone who without blogging would NEVER have gone on to do any of the cool things I have been able to do these last few years, the early days of HR blogging were just about the best times I ever had with this blog.

    Why take this walk down memory lane?

    Because my HR Happy Hour Show partner Trish McFarlane messaged me last week to let me know she was hosting the latest Carnival of HR, and wondered if I had a post to include in the round up.

    I will admit to not having thought about the Carnival in a long, long time, but then of course I remembered how once it was the MOST important thing for a lowly HR blogger like me. And I remembered how cool it was to be included.

    So of course I sent Trish over a post to include in the Carnival, (and thanks Trish for using it!).

    You can check out the Carnival of HR on Trish's HR Ringleader blog here.

    And check it out you should. Because there just might be someone included in the Carnival for the very first time, and who thinks that being included is the BIGGEST deal ever. 

    And you know what? 

    They would be right. It is the biggest deal ever. 

    Thanks Trish for including me. 

    And thanks to all the HR bloggers out there for letting me into your club.

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    Reader Comments (4)

    I can relate to this post, Steve. I come into the HR social media sphere in early 2009. I remember the first time HR bloggers I respected and admired replying to my tweets, or commenting on my blog posts. And I totally geeked out when you agreed to be a part of my HR 101 - The Series piece. I felt then, and still do now, as if I was a part of a vibrant community.

    Thanks for the trip down memory lane, Steve!

    October 25, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterVictorio Milian

    Hey Victorio - hope all is well! I remember the HR 101 series well! That was a great example of the kind of collaboration and community that was a big part of the HR blog scene back in those days. Thanks for sharing that memory!

    October 25, 2016 | Registered CommenterSteve

    Steve, thank you for sharing this. Like you, and Victorio, feeling that sense of camaraderie was what made me feel proud. When you work in HR, you're often an island in the organization. You never "fit in". But, in the blog world and with Twitter, we all suddenly fit in. I distinctly remember the first day that 4 people read my blog. I was thrilled. I remember many of the milestones after that. I appreciated every one. For all the hours we all worked on sharing our ideas, I felt like it was a gift that each blogger was giving me. The way we all guest posted on other blogs and of course, made our way to the Carnival of HR, was so special.

    Thank you for participating this month. I know every person who blogged and still blog has grown and changed. I'd love to see us resurrect the old guest post model sometime. Oh, and Victorio, I still remember being proud to write on your blog about Finance for HR! Great memory.

    October 26, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterTrish

    Thanks Trish for sharing your memories as well and for helping to keep the Carnival tradition going! That is a great point about sometimes not fitting in inside your own organization, but finding a community of people elsewhere. I am still glad to be a part of the HR blog community and still glad today when 4 people read the blog! And, anytime you want to guest post here, the door is open!

    October 26, 2016 | Registered CommenterSteve

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