AoIR8 Day1: Thursday early afternoon: Blogging

1. Loosing the blogs of war – Sean Lawson
sean lawson.jpg

current milblogger controversy
Foucault, Derrida

  • Rhetoric is always contextual.

Sean covered a general history of the milblog controversy (bans of YouTube, blogs, etc.) and then described how the milbloggers framed the issues.

[Why do people still read their papers? But his content and making his powerpoint not look like powerpoint was cool!]

For the army the issue, the exigence is that milbloggers might be sharing wartime infoz. For the milbloggers, their exigence is the response by the military on blogging. Treated as an information warfare issue rather than other kinds of issues (like civil liberties or free speech) thus keeping their issues internal to the military. Frame the army as misinformed and not as expert on information warfare as those on the ground level.

QA: the milbloggers “out” posers from the military easily.

[Reminds me of ‘Flippin? the Script’ / ‘Blowin? Up the Spot’: Puttin? Hip-Hop Online in (African) America and South Africa by Elaine Richardson and Sean Lewis]

2. Why academics blog – Gina Walejko
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Blogging might jeopardize academic tenure and progress. Dan Drezler (sp?)
So why do it? Is there actually a conflict of interest or maybe a time commitment issue?
Looked at a whole bunch of blogs (Crooked Timber).

[I think blogs–the way they are more spontaneous, more emotional, “less polished”–might represent a shift in our society or maybe academia from logic and reason or mind to emotion and body.]

[Academics who don’t blog… or find other ways of reaching out to the community are total wusses. If there is a desire to help society, doing it from on-high is a cop out. In other words, I actually think more academics schould blog not because it has great benefits but because we have an obligation.]

QA: Did you look at gender or what about more social factors like did they have kids? but no

3. An international comparison of blogging behaviors in 2005 – Jia Lin
jia lin.jpg

How blogs from different countries are different and why. Can she actually do a ‘why’ through survey research? But damn, 1.2 million blogs to start data mining (whittled to 800k after getting rid of the spam blogs).

The ratio of blogs from different countries actually correlates to the ratio of Internet users, so maybe it isn’t skewed. 🙂

Japan and European countries post more often but their posts are shorter than South American and Asian countries. Western countries link to other sites more, but the non-Western’s proportion of links to other blogs is higher.

[But aren’t different languages longer or shorter with same content? So measuring bytes is iffy.]

Used different souces for the indexes of the ‘why.’
ie, Bloggers from diff countries DO blog differently, and the difference is consistent with economic, political, and cultural elements.

4. Urban blogosphere: Gaming the sacred text and the new media middle – Clifford Tatum
clifford tatum good.jpg

“Sacred text” comes from real-estate where the MLS listings were hoarded. When they were made available, it actually didn’t have much impact at first since not many analytical tools were out there.
Analytic frame:

  • language and symbols of reality – Bordieu
  • old media disproportionate power over reality – Coudry
  • space of flows – Castells
  • middle media info (blogs and such) – Barnett
  • pure production – Baker

Media middle as practice (co-production of knowledge).
tacit (search engines, etc.) vs. explicit (wikipedia, etc.)

Field-site: downtown Seattle where condos were being sold 18 months before being built. In Sept 06, 32 new buildings and 6000 new residents in the next few years.
Urban blogosphere of Seattle – how does one get in line for one of these new condos that get sold 90% in one day years before actually being built? How does one be an insider?
Clifford started an anonymous blog about a particular building so he could track readership and flows.
Saw lots of interesting stuff about who goes to these blogs (Microsoft, Starbucks employees, contractors, etc.). Vulcan (Paul Allen’s co.) lurks and comments on blogs to generate positive buzz.

New stuff:

  • Radical transparency – RedFin’s CEO blogging about his company completely transparently
  • Blogging is destabalizing the info economy in material ways.
  • Emergent media middle but still digital divide.

[Online middle class same as offline middle class? Hell, yeah.]

One thought on “AoIR8 Day1: Thursday early afternoon: Blogging”

  1. Blogging provides another discussion forum for academia, and can be very valuable. Not all academic discussion has to be fully-baked (like journal articles and books are). Even informal discussions in the halls or over a meal are essential to academia, and blogs provide a long-distance way of doing that.

    Here’s a good example of that:
    The maintainer of this blog has published at least one paper based on initial discussions on this blog. I’ve learned a fair amount from discussions on that blog. There are lots of other blogs in this area as well.

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