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Who Wants Their Own Piece of the ‘Net?

We’re becoming more and more wired. The web is like a Gutenberg printing press for everybody with a keyboard. You can share ideas, concerns and opinions with people more easily today than ever before.

The potential for good is awesome. Blogs, podcasts, traditional websites, home based web businesses – these are all fun things that you sure as hell couldn’t do when I was a kid.

We’ve seen the influence. The Facebook revolutions. Blogs that sell for millions. Bricks and mortar bookstores being pushed out of the marketplace.

Lots of people can participate by responding, or buying, or simply reading and listening.

Someone has to provide content, though. Is that someone you? Do you have something to share? If so, what’s stopping you? It’s easy and cheap to have an online presence these days. Let me show you how.

There are lots of companies offering online blogs or stores. I began blogging in 2005 on Blogger, then moved to WordPress.com, and finally to WordPress.org. I have Typepad blogs, Livejournal blogs, Tumblr blogs, WordPress.com blogs, Squidoo lenses, Hubpages, and Blogspot blogs, but I really think that everyone who wants to put content on the ‘net should just start with their own personal hosted site. By that I mean a space on a big server somewhere that you use to store files that appear to the world as readable web pages of some kind. Instead of www.yourname.typepad.com/blog you end up with www.yourname.com. Simple, clean, and completely under your control.

You start with a host. My preference is Bluehost. They’re easy to use and dependable. I’ve used them for years now and been happy. Phone and live chat support will easily fix any problems you encounter. Costs are about $6 per month and you won’t run out of space. Anyone with a credit card can get an account. Just click here and follow the prompts.

Once you’ve got the account set up and get to the Control Panel, go to Domain Manager (2/3s of the way down the page). Open it up and go to the box that reads “new domain search” (top center part of the page). Type in your desired website address and see if its available. You can pick .com, .org, .net, .biz, or .us. Find one you like and buy it for $10. (There are cheaper options, I’m sure, but I know this one works and the price is pretty cheap).

Once you have a domain purchased, go back to domain manager and unlock and assign it. If it doesn’t work really easily contact Bluehost on the chat and get walked through.

Once your site is live you’ll see a default Bluehost screen (a nice blond student with some links). Go back to Bluehost’s control panel and go to the bottom of the page. In the second to last box, “Software/Services”, you’ll find “Simple Scripts”. This service will install lots of different types of software. Browse around. If you want a blog pick the simple WordPress installation. Its simple, it has lots of benefits, and tons of people around the world are improving it everyday.

You aren’t limited to blogs. You can start a bulletin board, a store, or all kinds of other stuff.

You’re maybe asking yourself why I wrote this post. Simple. Vivian Krause is raising a stink about US funds making their way into BC politics. I get a kick out of that and I like her pointed questions. I like the response she’s generating (its making the national press, and is quite instructive). But, I think she’s got a terrible and clumsy web address. I’m going to share this with her and recommend she go with WordPress. And frankly, if she can do it, so can you.

My name is Rob Chipman and I’m a realtor, pilot and all around super hero based in Vancouver, BC. I really enjoy flying, playing guitar and hockey, real estate and the Chilcotin.¬† My company is¬†Coronet Realty Ltd., located at 3582 East Hastings Street, Vancouver, BC, V5K 2A7. I have a C-150L that I own with two other pilots, based out of Pitt Meadows. Do not hesitate to contact me by email if I can help you do anything, especially if its likely to be interesting.


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