I feel the need to remind myself why I blog (or, at least, why I should blog). I’m feeling a little listy, so I’m going to do this in bullet point format.
why I blog
- First, and perhaps most importantly, blogging provides me with a way of “thinking out loud,” a way of sharing my thoughts with others as well as making a record for myself. Blogging my research creates a log for me to reference, a record of my research that can help me in organizing and compiling it into larger documents. As Torill Mortensen and Jill Walker point out in their article “Blogging thoughts: personal publication as an online research tool”:
“The instant publication encourages spontaneous writing rather than carefully thought out arguments. Being allowed to write spontaneously releases us of the expectation that our writing must be perfect and polished” (266).
“In our blogs, we allow ourselves to write half-thought, naked ideas and show them to others rather than saving them for fully fleshed out carefully thought through papers” (267)
At the same time, unlike notes written exclusively to oneself, blog entries require us to think through our ideas and more fully form them making it more likely that they will reach fruition in the future.
- Another aspect of blogging that is important to me as an academic is that it breaks the mold of the “ivory tower” publication process. In a blog you write for a larger audience and thus, your writing is more accessible and available to the world rather than just a select group of individuals.
- Along the same lines, writing in a blog allows for collaboration in a number of ways. Not only does it provide a place for you to share your research with colleagues, the comment function allows them to respond to your work.
- Blogs are allowed to be more personally oriented; they are, in fact, expected to be. Thus, blogging academic work implicitly argues for the importance of personal experience as evidence. At the very least, personal experience can share the same space as academic work.
- A particularly important reason for my blogging is that I consider myself to be a digital ethnographer. I am researching blogs and, significantly, arguing for their value and importance. Blogging reinforces my argument that blogs have value beyond narcissism and linking.
- Blogging makes me feel connected to the world.
So, there you are–a partial list of my reasons for blogging.