Part of yesterday's thing was to teach us about blogs and feeds. They made us get a google account. That went well. Except not for me. They think I'm a technology idiot, but really, I couldn't remember the password attached to the account I know I have on blogger, not this one, the other one. And I wasn't going to use this one.
So blogs. Have you heard? New sensation. Or not.
The facilitator (a special tech person) taught us how to add RSS feeds to the page we made, because it will help us manage our reading of blogs and such. I'm sure it does.
Here's the question I'd like to ask, though. And I know lots of people use feeds, so some of you will have some thoughts, I hope.
If you do your blog reading through a "feed," are you less likely to comment on the blog?
Do you think that commenting and conversations in blog communities is less lively when people use feeds?
I love the metaphor of "feed" by the way. It's so passive. Here, you're being "fed" a list of blogs that have posted recently.
I think part of what these folks are thinking when they suggest having students do blogging is that students will become more aware of audience and rhetorical situations on a blog than in a standard, turn it into the prof paper. But if they're not commenting on each other's blogs, and not getting comments, it's really not so different from turning it into your professor, right?
I don't think blogging generally results from the sort of brainstorming and revision processes that we hope our students will use to write academic work. It's not that I think all writing has to look like academic writing (see "blog" and "Bardiac"), but I'm not sure asking them to practice blogging will help them write for classes and professional situations.
(Note: I use the sidebar thing, and still sometimes look at what other people have on their sidebars in order to learn about new blogs. Then sometimes, if someone hasn't posted in a long while, I delete them from my sidebar. Sometimes, I hope people will start posting again, so I don't delete them for a long time.)