Weekly Roundup: Blog Picks for October 17, 2008

Posted in The Gnovis Blog

This week, the place of politics

• Stanley Fish, at the New York Times, tries to sort out recent university memos barring professors from wearing campaign buttons, attending campus political rallies, and even placing political bumper stickers on their cars. (new window) After discussing several worthy (and not so worthy view points), he concludes that it’s contextual: “It’s a policy matter, not a moral or philosophical matter, and as long as the policy is reasonably related to the institution’s purposes, it raises no constitutional issues at all.”

• Michael, at Gamestate, points to several “in-game political ads” (new window). No commentary means more space for your interpretation.

at gnovis, the permeability of the real and the digital

• Lauren Alfrey, the Assistant Managing Editor at gnovis, questions her relationship with Facebook (new window). She suggests that regardless of how hard we try to sculpt our online identities, middle school rules still apply: "your coolness is directly proportional to the coolness (or lack thereof) of your friends."

• Meanwhile, I wonder about online spaces of communication (new window). Does our behavior in physical spaces extend to applications like Blackboard discussion forums and blogs? Brad Weikel posits that it may not be behavioral, but structural (new window): “though we’re all used to hearing that "blogging is a conversation," it is often framed as an author-to-commentor conversation, whereas discussion boards are generally understood to be community-centric conversations.”

around CCT, its more about blogging

• Will blogs kill writing? Jed Brubaker comments on the article in the Atlantic Monthly (new window), quoting Andrew Sullivan, on the role of a blogger: “The role of a blogger is not to defend against this but to embrace it. He is similar in this way to the host of a dinner party. He can provoke discussion or take a position, even passionately, but he also must create an atmosphere in which others want to participate.”

• Ashley Bowen offers a review of Blog Wars by David Perlmutter (new window). While she finds it “to be an excellent introduction to the world of blogging without being overly simplistic”, she also wishes he had “spend more time talking about blogs with small audiences, small scopes, and an emphasis on good chewing (as opposed as just chewing your cud).” Read her review, pick up a copy, and comment.

special callout: posts about the financial crisis

Students in Dr. Garcia’s Networks and International Development class consider the financial crisis in the context of global society. In his post about the US’s place in a globalized world (new window), Matt Tyrrel asks "if the U.S. has no institutions, no horizontal relationships: has it
over-valued itself? Could it be that past American dominance in the
global market has been a leveraging of interests more than economic
Hushmath Alam suggests that the US has something to learn (new window) from the way other countries have handled economic crises in the past: "…the fact remains that countries will have to work together and take
part in some form of civic engagement if they want to get out of this
global financial crisis."
Read Dr. Garcia’s thoughts on the subject here (new window).

for your amusement

Freudian slip? Three hundred absentee ballots sent from Rensselaer County, N.Y had listed the Democratic candidate for president as “Barack Osama." (new window) (Link thanks to Brad (new window).)

Want to jumpstart your tourist industry? Give this a try (new window), but check with PETA first. (Link thanks to Jed (new window).)

Something we should be reading? Let us know!