I followed two blogs. One was info-fetishist by Anne-Marie Deitering and the second was Academic Librarian by Wayne Bivens-Tatum. What was interesting about both these blogs was that they both have an area that they love, but they shift from these specific areas of interest quite a bit into overlapping interests. Anne-Marie for example says her main focus is on emerging technology, but she also just focuses on the field and its happenings. She does have quite a bit on emerging technologies and what it would mean to the field. Wayne focuses on issues that would come up in a library, but like Anne-Marie, varies for topics of perhaps interest about general happenings in the field.
Both of these blogs are incredibly readable. I loved the language used, the topics covered, and just the way in which they presented what they had to say. They also commonly make reference to scholarly reading. Using either of these blogs, perhaps in combination with a few other that span different topics, would be a great way to stay up-to-date on what is going on in the field. It also is just great to hear a different perspective.
One article of Wayne’s I found humorous was his blog “Plagiarism and Library Research Guides.” It touched on the idea of librarians sharing information with other librarians. What was funny was that none of the librarians were citing their information. One plagiarism guide had made its way to several different sites and not one had cited the original. A little irony. Of course, there are more serious, more academic posts, but there are also other ones that just make it enjoyable and fun (not that the serious, academic posts are not enjoyable).
Anne-Marie had a really enjoyable post called “All Mistakes Are Not Created Equal.” She talked about over grading and how pointing out errors too frequently on assignments that students are just beginning can cause them to give up more readily and leave for a different challenge. It also touches on plagiarism and how often times students who do not know how to use a scholarly voice, will imitate the voices of the scholars they are reading. This can cause something similar to plagiarism, but we have to give students the room to imitate until they find their own academic voice.
What I took from these blogs is that not every post has to be specific to what you claim your blog is about. Some posts can be fun, reflective, or even extremely specific to what you are trying to do. Mostly, it is about readability. Blogs give a chance for expression that steps out of that Academic setting. It can be more creative. It can give a chance for people who do not read scholarly articles to find a place to push themselves to do so.
I think I will continue reading these blogs…