Tuesday, November 06, 2007


pro and con, by Scott Kaufman and Adam Kotsko at Inside Higher Ed.

I've only ever been an occasional long-distance observer of the Valve- Long Sunday disputes Kotsko discusses (and when I've peeked in, my sympathies haven't lain with him). But he seems to me to get at something important about a couple of shifts in the academic blogosphere, as comments sections have become ubiquitous and group-blogs have become the norm. The tendency toward institutionalization in such a fluid medium is kind of odd, really, and it may come at a price.
There are enough institutional turf wars in academe – if blogs are to play a productive role in academic discourse, they should not gratuitously recreate those same dynamics, and for me that means moving away from having quasi-institutional group blogs with stated missions and back toward conversations dispersed among many blogs.

I haven't ever articulated this to myself as my reason for ending up back here on my low-traffic, casual, comments-free solo blog. But I think he's onto something there.