Monday, November 21, 2005

My Not My Real Nameness

I didn't want to say I told you so, but, well I told you so.

Blogging in your own name, especially with Articles interviews (fingers crossed anyway) coming up, is probably not so bright.

Nobody gives you much credit for blogging, then again, it can seemingly hurt your chances when you go for that big job.

Makes you think, hey...

Hat tip - Legal Theory Blog


Blogger Dash Brannigan said...

Your should look at the economics faculty of George Mason University. Pretty much all of them blog and are encouraged to do so. But as economics departments go GMU is pretty progressive.

11:16 am  
Blogger Not my real name said...

True - also, for example, the University of Chicago Law School (Posner, Sunstein etc) have set up a faculty blog.

It is only a matter of time before blogs go mainstream properly, and the 'oldies' become more comfortable with their use.

At the moment, they are probably recoiling because of their lack of understanding of what blogging can do and is meant to do.

But you are right.

1:51 pm  
Blogger Dash Brannigan said...

I would have to disagree with you on lack of understanding thing. I would imagine that ANY academic would be more than familiar with use of the web and email. So I don’t think it’s technology getting in the way.

Also I have no doubt that academics realize how amazing blogs can be. It would be like a Symposium (or Symposia not sure) every week. Ideas are supposed to be their currency the better they flow they happier they should be.

I think the issue is like the article said, the threat to careers. Not only from within academia but from without. You have academics moving into other job area (i.e. Law Professors becoming Judges, Economics Professors becoming Fed Chairs). When being considered for roles like this every thing you have written is scrutinized. Isn’t Posner is still suffering form something he wrote back in the 70’s?

It seems to be one of those things that sometimes objective academic inquiry is not really fit for public consumption. Just take some of Gary Becker's work or Stephen Levitt's (for the record both from Uni of Chicago). To me, their work seems rational and coherent, other people from outside the field see it as racist, misogynistic or just plain cold.

6:57 pm  
Blogger Not my real name said...

You are right in some ways, however I still stand by my argument that the lack of understanding of blogs hampers their acceptance among EMPLOYERS, rather than colleagues.

I think there is a real aversion to the type of ad hoc debate generated by bloggers in the circles of 'upper management'. I think academic employers see blogs as time wasting. If they are not time wasting, then the work should be directed towards getting yourself published in proper peer-reviewed journals.

Try telling Alan Gilbert or Glyn Davis that their academics should be throwing half baked paper ideas out to the general public for general comment.

So, I agree that the problem experienced by the blogger in the original article was not created by the lack of understanding of blogs by academics, but an aversion to the medium by his employers.

Until the medium is accepted by mainstream management, I think blogging can and will hurt careers. Look at Article III Groupie, who ran Underneath Their Robes, a supposedly female blogger who blogged about underground gossip in the Federal Courts of the US. A3G turned out to be David Lat, an attorney in the AG's office.

Once he outed himself, the site got shut down. I haven't heard whether he lost his job.

In any case, the transparency and accountability blogs create are not every big organisation's cup of tea.

7:58 pm  

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