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Sorry Courtney

I got this message late Friday afternoon:

I am a college student at Syracuse University. I am writing an article about weblogs. I understand you do a bit of “blogging” yourself. I would love to ask you a few questions about weblogging. Unfortunately, my deadline is tonight by midnight. I’d appreciate your help and eagerly await your response..

what are the benefits of weblogging? i’ve talked to a handful of colleges that are using current students to write weblogs. Admissions are using the weblogs to attract prospective students. do you think this will become a trend? have you heard anything about this? what do you think are the cons of blogging?

I guess I am not the only person who works up to the deadlines. The best I could do is dash off some quick thoughts likely too late for Courtney’s deadline (is there a lesson there, Court?) especially for such broad open questions. How would you reply?

My response follow….

what are the benefits of weblogging?

It allows mere mortal people, not just techies or geeks, the abiiity to easily and quickly publishweb sites about information that is important to them. Weblogs can be authored anywhere there is access to the net, and now that many of them offer a wide range of quality templates, they are much better sites than home grown web pages. Weblogs also offer a series of underlying toosl that enable social connections with like minded (or not) persons- namely comments, trackbacks, and RSS syndication.

i’ve talked to a handful of colleges that
are using current students to write weblogs. Admissions are using the weblogs
to attract prospective students. do you think this will become a trend?

I have no idea, but while blogs may be used this way, I doubt most institutions would support the time and energy for Admission departments to spend blogging. Blogging is more about *personal* publishing. On the other hand, blogs are more than just diaries, and organizations are using them to publish newsletters, online resource collections, and more:

See:
http://cogdogblog.com/alan/archives/2004/12/05/blog_smell.php

And… M&M Magazine a collection of weblogs written by 6th grade students at Brandon Middle School.
http://mrmayo.typepad.com/magazine/

what do you think are the cons of blogging?

It takes time and an obsessive type of personality to stay with with it. Many bloggers drop the ball after a few months. Many miss the importance of reading and commenting in other people’s blogs as a means of connecting them to yours (it is more than just about publishing). And the spread of smappers using blog tools to insert their unwanted URLS into blogs is a con.

Profile Picture for Alan Levine aka CogDog
An early 90s builder of the web and blogging Alan Levine barks at CogDogBlog.com on web storytelling (#ds106 #4life), photography, bending WordPress, and serendipity in the infinite internet river. He thinks it's weird to write about himself in the third person.

Comments

  1. Hey, kinda funny, I also received the same email from Courtney yesterday. Reading your post I’m left with the impression we did her homework for her…(I also replied). oh well…

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