January 13, 2004

Getting the most out of your academic weblog

    Private vs. Public
  • Anyone can read this: professors, classmates
  • Don’t write about your love life or last weekend’s activities unless you want your professors (or the academic dean) to read about it
  • Take caution when complaining about classes or classmates
  • Also, watch what you write – don’t link to pictures of you doing anything illegal while at school. Someone will invariably turn you in.
  • As with everything, try not to make hasty generalizations about issues, and don’t be offensive to people or groups!
  • Don’t start out your homework assignments with the title: “Homework.” That is very boring. Few will actually read it.
  • Add links and use them well. Don’t type out the address – make the words describing the link be the link.
  • Don't plagarize, and attribute what you "borrow."
    Foster Discussion
  • Comment on other people’s blogs. It makes them feel loved and needed.
  • Intellectual sparring is okay, but few people enjoy personal attacks
  • If you write it, it will be misunderstood
  • Use emoticons when you think you might be taken the wrong way (but don’t use them when blogging or commenting on a serious or professional issue)
    The Upside
  • Your own weblog not only gives you a handy personal publishing outlet, but it also is much better than jweb's forums.
  • You get to know your classmates better. Make friends through your blog.
  • Future employers might read your blog, and might want to hire you because of it.
  • Well-thought-out weblogs aren’t born every day – just look at the recently updated lists of Blogger.com and LiveJournal. You’ll stand out in a crowd.
Helpful hint: before you click “save,” highlight and copy it should MT foul-up. Also, thanks to all of you who provided examples for this educational purpose... ;) Posted by Julie Young at January 13, 2004 09:59 PM

You might be on to a feature story for a publication that targets college students!

Posted by: Mike Arnzen at January 13, 2004 11:12 PM

Great tips. A suggestion: outsiders won't know who Dr. Gawelek is... so you might change that to "the dean of students." There may be other places where you can generalize your post to appeal to other readers.

Posted by: Dennis G. Jerz at January 14, 2004 12:45 AM

I like how "professors" is actually three separate links -- but I didn't notice it until I looked at the HTML. What if you made each chunk of the word a different color, or if you put spaces between the letters? Maybe it's not bad that I didn't notice it right away. Thoughts, anyone?

Posted by: Dennis G. Jerz at January 14, 2004 12:52 AM

Oh Julie, you've got me! Titling your homework, "Homework," keeps people from reading it. Why would I subject the world outside of SHU to my text exercises?

Posted by: Kate Cielinski at January 14, 2004 08:39 AM

Kate - thanks for being a good sport! (I read your blog anyway...although I never read your homework.)

Dr. Arnzen - are you attempting to give me homework?

Posted by: Julie at January 14, 2004 04:10 PM

Julie, you made me reconsider my titles. I'll start titling my blog entries with "Nude pics here!" and hand in essays with racey titles. Yeehaw!

Posted by: Kate Cielinski at January 14, 2004 07:51 PM

Your presentation was very informative, however, i could have cared less for it. Really, our blog is our blog, and if we want to do something, we are going to do it anyways, your presentation will not have an effect on that. Personally, had anyone given me these "unofficial" guidelines, I would have been like, this is bull, im not writing on it. I quite enjoy my blogging style, and every thing i put in my blog has meaning to me whether or not it does to anyone else. If anyone has a problem with what i say, or doesn't understand anything, then why the hell don't they just ask me in my comments section?

Posted by: Lori Rupert at January 15, 2004 02:20 PM

I find the fact that you used my entry as an example of an offensive blog (without telling me about it I might add) quite offensive in its own right. I also take it as a personal attack that you consider my generalizations hasty, when in fact i put a great deal of thought into figuring out exactly whom and what to generalize. Oops, you seem to have broken two of your own rules...

Posted by: Paul Crossman at January 15, 2004 02:47 PM

But never fear, I will always use emoticons. :)

Posted by: Julie at January 15, 2004 03:56 PM

You may have seen me cracking up at the back of class. Thanks for the links--any publicity is good, I guess :-)

Posted by: Amanda at January 15, 2004 07:01 PM

Any time I can help, Amanda. ;)

Posted by: Julie at January 15, 2004 09:50 PM

Funny, I don't see any "emoticons."

Posted by: Paul Crossman at January 15, 2004 10:24 PM

Hey now, that was a piece of academic work. And I was giving you free publicity... ;)

Posted by: Julie at January 15, 2004 10:46 PM

So if I call one of my entries a "piece of academic work," then it's ok for me to offend people? Sounds like bullshit to me. Oh, and there are two different types of publicity. For instance, when I put a link to your blog on my page entitled "The Shittiest Blog on the Internet," it's publicity...and yet, is it the kind that you really want? Somehow I doubt it. Also, it is my personal oppinion that emoticons are useless, and it tends to offend me more when people use them. :-D

Posted by: Paul Crossman at January 17, 2004 08:08 PM

Is it a suprise to anyone that Paul talks a lot, critiques, and generally brings someone with a high self-esteem down to a rainday? He's from New York, I think they get paid to do it.

Posted by: Puff at January 18, 2004 02:08 PM

But do they really deserve the high self-esteem in the first place? hmm....

Posted by: Paul Crossman at January 18, 2004 06:00 PM

Julie, I can't believe I'm saying this, but I agree with Paul. I mean I use my blog for any number of things. If, in the event that I was to give my web address to an employer, I would most likely go back through my entries and remove anything I don't want them to see. Then again, everything I write is my opinion.

I also want to point out that for those of us who have been blogging for a while have people that come to our individual sites for what is in those sites. Perhaps if we had had this type of presentation in the beginning of the year when most of us were in Practices of Journalism it would be differnt, but now we have identified ourselves for our opinions in our own way, I don't think now is a time to change it.


Posted by: Tiffany at January 18, 2004 06:11 PM

If person A applies visual details that are widely associated with evil to the image of person X, and applies to person X a word in a context that most dictionaries define as "offensive," and then publishes the result on a website, is it reasonable to conclude that person A is trying to be offensive? Probably.

If person B voices the opinion that person A's actions are offensive, is it reasonable to conclude that person B is trying to offend person A? Probably not. (There's a difference between motive and result, here.)

When person A labels person B as offensive merely for exercising the same rights that person A champions, is it reasonable to conclude that person A is trying once more to be offensive? Probably.

When person A states the opinion that emoticons are offensive, and then uses an emoticon, is it reasonable to conclude that person A is once again trying to be offensive? Probably.

I laughed at the emoticon comment... good one. If you get tired here, Paul, come on over to my blog! ;)

Posted by: Dennis G. Jerz at January 19, 2004 12:11 PM

If person A is travelling on a train going 30 miles per hour, which left from station B at 8:00, and person C is riding in a car with person D at a speed of 60 miles per hour, how long will it take person A to get his head out of his ass and realize that no one takes the train anymore?

Posted by: Paul Crossman at January 19, 2004 12:16 PM

I certainly wouldn't use that tone in response to a professor, regardless of the amount of attention I desired.

Posted by: Vandye at January 19, 2004 03:48 PM

Now now. Dr. Jerz is probably one of my favorite professors, for exactly the reason that he knows when I'm joking and when I'm serious. If I overstepped the bounds, I apologize, because in no way was I trying to belittle a professor. If I meant anything with that post it was to satirize the infamous SAT questions that we all know and love so much.

Sorry for the confusion. I guess at least one of Julie's points was right on target. (the one about misinterpretation of anything and everything you write.)

Posted by: Paul Crossman at January 19, 2004 05:02 PM

And though I may have poked fun at the way the point was made, it was still taken and understood. Which I hope is what Dr. Jerz was going for.

Posted by: Paul Crossman at January 19, 2004 05:04 PM

Wow, i just went back and read that comment and realized how bad it actually does sound. Dr. Jerz, I apologize, and once again reiterate that I didn't mean it as an offense to you. sorry!

Posted by: Paul Crossman at January 19, 2004 06:15 PM

I wasn't offended... I recognized Paul's train/car/ass comment as a joke, but I was depending on my offline knowledge of his sense of humor. So there's a writing lesson in this.

If person A...

Oh, forget it... :p

Posted by: Dennis G. Jerz at January 20, 2004 04:41 AM

Useful article Julie. I have linked it from BlogScholar, academic blogging portal. If you have an academic blog you want to add to the directory visit, register and submit your site.

Posted by: Blog Scholar - New Academic Blog Directory at June 21, 2005 10:21 AM
Post a comment

Remember personal info?