Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Blogging as Diary

Today we're digging into blogging as a form of diary.

A few to check out from LiveJournal:

Apifera Farm

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

The strange relationship between blogging and journalism

Today we are tackling the issue of journalism as it relates to blogging.

Take a look at these heavily trafficked blogs:


And, take a look at:
The Times Union with a special emphasis on their blogs

Monday, November 3, 2008

Additional Places to Find Blogs

As students beginning working on their fourth essay, they are looking around for a blog to observe and participate on for a week. Finding blogs isn't hard, you just have to know where to look. has a blog directory that provides a comprehensive index of blogs by topic.

It also offers an "authority" and a rank. The authority number is the number of inlinks to a blog (that is, the number of links from other blogs to the blog you are reading). The rank is calculated based on your authority rating. The higher the authority the closer the blog is to the top and the smaller the rank. So, a rank of "1" is a top-authority blog, if you will.

Technorati's front page also provides headlines of "rising stories" in the blogosphere that are interesting to peruse in their own right.

Another useful source for finding blogs is Google's blog search. In addition to being able to search the blogs indexed by Google, it also provides on its front page top stories on the blogs or on Web pages that are inlinked from other blogs.

Monday, October 27, 2008


We're now starting to dig into weblogging. As an introduction, take a look at a few political blogs.

Two on the right:

Two on the left:

Monday, October 20, 2008

Wikis and Wikipedia

Today and Wednesday we're discussing Wikis and Wikipedia.

For some background:

  • The New York Times recently published an article on Wikipedia's recent attempts to protect entries from "vandalism" on the site.
  • Many professors have told students that they cannot use or cite information that they get from Wikipedia, because it's not "trusted" information (more on that in Wednesday's class). Another article published in the New York Times discusses the History Department at Middleburgh College and it decision to ban student's use of Wikipedia as a reference in their papers.
  • A few years ago, there was a widely-publicized controversy about Wikipedia's entry on John Seigenthaler, Sr., in which it was incorrectly asserted that he was involved in President John F. Kennedy's assassination.
Wikipedia continues to be a controversial but heavily used source for information. In class, we'll tuck into these issues and examine the benefits and problems with collaborative writing and with knowledge management in a Web 2.0 world.

Third Essay Project

For those following our class blog, students are posting another essay today. This one is a bit strange, in that it's more of an informative essay than a persuasive one. Their task in this essay was to begin searching a particular We 2.0 tool of their choosing, and to describe that search process in detail, and then to evaluate the quality of the information they found. The purpose of the assignment was to get students thinking consciously about their search strategies and their evaluation strategies. We'll see if it worked!