While it grates on me to seeing ‘blogging’ derided, I think it’s a good step if
it moved away from being homework. One of the ‘generalizations’ in the slides
is: “Most students don’t read blogs unless required/forced to.” I think you
would agree that reading is actually the foremost activity when blogging—you
and I do a ton of reading, all of my favorite hypertexters do. And possibly the
biggest problem with social media today is how much writing is done without
sufficient reading. (The term ‘the shallows’ returns to mind—which isn’t a
good adjective for any of the blogs I really get into.)
To me, it is the method of reading that needs to be questioned—not the method
of writing. Express yourself however you want. But now we’ve got mixed media
everywhere and it’s been very hard for people to adapt to consuming a variety of it. (Certain
people have adapted to listening to podcasts, others to YouTube, very few to
blogs—possibly as a result of the complexity of hypertext.)

It kills me how many in the edtech/Domains space seem to love memes. It’s
always cute and fun, but they feel so vapid and ineffectual. It’s like copying
someone else’s work and trying to pass it off as our own. English teachers
used to say, “Don’t be cliché,” but now through the use of digital memes
they’re almost encouraging it.

It seems similar to clip art of previous generations—it prevents the paralysis
of a blank canvas for many people. It also seems to be part of the movement to
make text more visual—as seen in Twitter embeds or using screenshot images of
text—people seem to be getting more averse to just straight text. (This could
get even worse if VR ever takes off.)
But I really agree with your point. Even in this video, many poor reasons are
given for dropping ‘blogging’: it’s not “disruptive” enough, students don’t
intuitively understand it (lacking a historical context for it), it’s not
trending any more… But text still has real power. If anyone doubts me
on this point, go read Nadia Eghbal’s essay “The Tyranny of
Ideas”
—I thought this was tremendous. Sure,
she could have done this as a video—but it would have likely taken longer,
required more equipment, and I think it would be more difficult to review again
and again. Does text need a performance?
I think h0p3 is spot on with the term
antipleonasmic. Which could also be
rephrased: “the dogged attempt to resist cliché.”

Syndicated copies to: