Blogs and wikis provide ways to quickly share information on a site, without requiring advanced tools or expertise. They are often easier for people to update than a formal document or traditional Web site.
This article provides a brief overview of blogs and wikis. Find links to more information about how to use blogs and wikis in the See Also section.
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Differences between blogs and wikis
Although blogs and wikis can help your team collaborate without advanced tools or specialized knowledge, there are differences in how your team can use them:
Blogs A blog typically has one author or a few authors who write the blog posts and respond to comments from readers. The author, also known as a blogger, offers a unique viewpoint or writing style.
In some blogs, the role of the blogger is important. For example, managers can use a blog post to explain the reason behind some policy changes, team members can describe their experiences on a special project, or technicians can describe best practices or how something works in their own words.
The blog posts and comments are recorded in reverse chronological order. People can scroll through the posts, similar to reading a journal.
Wikis Teams usually write wikis as a collective process. After someone creates a page, another team member might add more content, edit the content, or add supporting links. The community of authors helps to ensure the accuracy and relevance of the content.
Wikis continue to evolve as people add and revise information. Although a version history is collected, and the history is organized in chronological order, the versions aren't displayed in journal style in the default view of a wiki.
Your team might want to use a wiki to build a collective body of knowledge or to facilitate planning, such as for a team project, a publication, or a conference.
Blogs contain posts, sometimes similar to journal entries, from a person or a group. The posts are dated and listed in reverse chronological order. People can comment on posts as well as provide links to related sites, photos, and blogs.
Blogs can enable an organization to quickly share information among employees, partners, or customers. People can add insight to a difficult subject area, provide inspiration and guidance, or explain a new guideline or procedure.
For example, members of a marketing team can use a blog to present and collect feedback on strategic ideas. Or a human resources department can use a blog to recognize employee achievements. By encouraging readers to post comments, people can find out what their readers think about a given subject.
Blogs can be created on a site by using simple formatting tools that are available in Web browsers such as Windows Internet Explorer that support ActiveX controls. You can also use some common authoring tools, such as Microsoft Word. The readers of a blog can subscribe to RSS Feeds so they can stay updated on new posts or comments.
A wiki is a Web site that enables users to collect team knowledge, plan events, or work on projects together. People can easily add new content or edit existing content.
People need only a Web browser and permissions to the wiki site — they don't need special tools or knowledge about creating sites. People can quickly add to existing pages and easily create links to new pages.
Links in a wiki can be created even before the pages that they point to are actually created. For example, a team member might think that a subject needs related information but not have time to create a new page right away. The team member can create a placeholder link that can be turned into an actual page later by following the link and adding content to create the page.
Versions are enabled for wiki pages. The version history for each page captures how the content evolves. You can see who changed the content and when it was changed, and even roll back to a previous version if a mistake is made.