Utahns are definitely on the blogwagon.

Heather Armstrong is a Salt Lake City resident who blogs at www.dooce.com. She updates her diary about three times each week and was featured in a May 18 New York Times story. Armstrong lost her job as a Web designer in February 2002 after someone told her boss of embellished sketches about her co-workers, which were featured on her Web site, according to her May 19 entry.

The day after she was fired, she made this statement on her site: "I refuse to live in fear. I refuse to be censored. I've lived my life far too long in fear of disrupting expectations. I made a conscious decision when I conceived dooce.com that I would never bow to the intimidation of others."

Now, other bloggers sometimes seek her out for advice on what and what not to publish on their Web sites.

"A good rule of thumb is never to publish anything about anyone or anything that they wouldn't stand up and say on national television," she said. "Once you publish something on the Internet, it never goes away."

David Fletcher, a resident of American Fork, publishes his blog, titled David Fletcher's Government and Technology Weblog, at http://radio. weblogs.com/0110120.

Fletcher, deputy director of the Department of Administrative Services for Utah, oversees a product-management council that is made up of high-level business people in state departments.

For about the past 11 months, he has maintained his blog, which shares information about technology uses in government, or e-government.

Since he began blogging, Fletcher started looking at what other bloggers were saying about information technology.

"I found it real interesting that there's a lot of people working with e-government issues around the world," he said.

The 5,946 blogs registered on www.globeofblogs.com is nowhere near the real worldwide total.

"I think there's about a million and a half Web logs," Fletcher said. "Not all of them are maintained."

Wendy Thompson and her husband own the Double Diamond Fiber Farm in Vernal. Thompson is relatively new to blogging, starting her Web site, www.ddiamond.net, after meeting a Norwegian woman with a similar site. She says she blogs about three times each week and has a following of 15 to 20 readers who read her blog almost daily, which is a special tool for her.

"It's a way of keeping in touch with people," Thompson said, who posts information about her family and farm, as well as knitting, items for sale and recipes.

She likes blogging because she has time to think about what she wants to say. If she doesn't like something she has posted, no worries.

"You have the option to go and change it," she said.

Armstrong never expected the kind of attention she ended up receiving. She said she started her blog merely as a way to practice writing and devote some Internet real estate to the music she listens to, what annoys her, what thrills her and "all the stories in between."


E-MAIL: jdougherty@desnews.com