How To Set Up A Free Blog
Blogs are brilliant; they're an outlet for whatever you want to say. Whether you're interested in setting up a personal blog to be viewed by just a few friends, or want to take on the might of The Internet and put the World to rights, setting up your own unique blog is a breeze. There are two main blog providers: Blogger and Wordpress. We're going to take a quick look at each in turn so you can pick one and get up and running as quickly and smoothly as possible.
Step 1: Blogger
Point your browser towards Blogger.com, and ‘click create your blog' now.
You need an account; because Blogger is owned by Google if you've got a googlemail or gmail account, you can use that. Otherwise, sign up for one now.
Fill in the signup form, and click ‘continue'.
Next, you'll need to pick a name for your blog. Pick something sharp and snappy that reflects what your blog is about.
Your blog's unique web address will then be http://whateveritwasyouchose.blogspot.com. You don't need to buy any hosting or webspace or anything – it's all dealt with at ‘their end'.
Next you'll need to choose a template – this is a look of your blog. Don't worry too much, you can easily change this later if you pick one that looks a bit rubbishy, but have a scan down and pick something that'll reflect the content of your blog.
Click the little button under a template's thumbnail, and then click ‘Continue'.
Woo. That's it, look. “Your blog has been created”. Click Start Posting, it's time to put your words up on The Internet.
Writing a post is as easy as writing an email. Just add a subject and body text. If you want to upload a picture too, you can with the “Add Image” button. Click it, and browse to the picture you want to upload, and click Upload. Easy.
When you're done, click Publish and whatever words of wisdom you wrote will be put on The Internet for everyone to marvel at.
Of course, at this stage, noone knows it's there yet so don't get all panicky. You'll need to let people know about your blog before you get visitors. Unless someone's typing random words dot blogspot.com into their address bar and happens to get lucky, your post isn't going to get read yet.
The Template bar lets you fiddle about with your site's look, and there are all sorts of funky settings in ‘Settings'. Why not have a click and a see what you can do?
Step 2: Wordpress
Wordpress works in a very similar way to Blogger. Near identical, in fact. It's the same steps, albeit packaged up in a slightly different way.
Head to www.wordpress.com and select Sign Up Now. Your site will eventually be http://whateveritwasyouchose.wordpress.com
Fill in all your details, pick a name for your blog, select the option to sign up for a blog and click Next >>.
Pick your blog's name, fill in the rest of the details and click “Sign Up Now”.
That's it. You're up and running. From here, you can either start a new post, change your template, or take a peek at how your site looks.
Click the option to write a new post, and you'll be taken to the Write page. Again, it's just like an email – you need a title, a body of text and an image if appropriate. Then just click Publish.
The View Site button's at the top, so you can see what you've published straight away.
Everything in blogging is editable, and nothing's permanent; you can turn off comments or make it so you can approve or ‘moderate' them if you're concerned about Spam or people writing nasty things about you.
Of course there are other free blogging websites out there, and they all do pretty much the same thing. Pick one that suits you and fits your needs.