Page last updated at 06:39 GMT, Wednesday, 20 July 2005 07:39 UK

Pick of the blogs: Going Underground

By Darren Waters
BBC News entertainment reporter

Blogs and blogging have become buzzwords in the last 18 months, with millions of people setting up their own web logs to record their lives, comment on world events or share news.

There are almost as many different types of blogs as there are bloggers. Some are highly professional while others are simple online diaries. We pick out six of the best.

Please note that some blogs can contain strongly-worded language and highly-personal views.


Boing Boing

Underground

Tokyo Times

360 degrees

Dooce

Zucchini


GOING UNDERGROUND

WHO WRITES IT?

A London commuter whose nom de plume is Annie Mole. The blog grew out of a general website about the London Underground but soon became so popular that it is now the focus of the site.

"Blogging is like reality TV in a way, but far, far better in my opinion," said Annie.

"I started reading other people's blogs months before I started my own and I couldn't believe how long I spent reading them and visiting them everyday."

WHAT IS IT ABOUT?

Annie describes the blog as a chronicle of "the usual quirky, funny and weird things we spot about the Tube", one of the world's most famous transport systems.

But the blog was shocked out of its usual light tone on Thursday 7 July, when three bombs exploded in the London Underground system.

"I felt that I had a kind of duty to keep people informed," she said.

Going Underground is so popular that search engines like Google often link to it when people search for references to the Tube.

She said: "I knew that it would be getting a lot of people coming along and not just wanting to hear our usual ramblings but information and news.

"I had the radio on in my study and went back and forth to watch TV and do the odd screen grab. What was difficult was keeping a balance of 'this is what's happening' and personal stuff."

She said the nature of blogging - "being able to update quickly and from any PC" - meant she could respond to events very quickly.

In fact, many blogs became a source of information on the London bombings for people around the world.

HOW OFTEN IS IT UPDATED?

There is a daily update, often with photos.

IN WHAT STYLE IS IT WRITTEN?

The writer describes the blog as "light-hearted, funny, wacky, weird and alternative". It is an irreverent daily dose of life as a Tube commuter, filled with a great affection for the Underground.

Obviously the tone has changed in the last few weeks, but she said she was determined that the blog would return to "trivial mode".

"You may not be ready to switch back to 'trivial' mode yet, and I'm not saying that I am either, but I felt that we needed a post that (almost) wasn't related to last weeks tragic events," she said in a recent posting.

SHOW ME AN EXAMPLE POSTING

Most Londoners are now determined to go into work, but please, please be extra vigilant. I remember the aftermath of September 11th and there were hundreds of security alerts on the London Underground in the weeks that followed as every single suspicious thing was quite rightly being reported.



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