Berkeley offers Blogging Class

According to Wired, the University of California at Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism will offer a class in blogging next fall. The class will be taught by John Batelle, who co-founded Wired magazine, and Paul Grabowicz, the school’s new media program director.

This of course, intrigues me mightily. It also gives me hope that I can manage something similar at UCLA. There’s one particular faculty member I know of who I really must get to take a look at blogging. It’s got such enormous potential for composition, in English or in other languages, or writing in general.

OK, I was Wrong: it’s War Blogger vs Tech Blogger

Thanks to Doc Searls and Eric Raymond, I realize my error. The question was one of war bloggers versus tech bloggers. Doc points to Dave Winer, who writes:

I was interviewed by a BigPub reporter yesterday asking if it was true that the warbloggers had obsoleted the tech blogs. A weird question, because I wasn’t even aware that there was a concept of “tech blog.”

Well, shoot, where does that leaves us humanists? The librarians and attorneys, and heck, even the medievalists and Celticists?

The fact that someone thinks this false dichotomy is even an issue reminds me of the old joke about there being two kinds of people in the world.

Neighbors

I’ve added a link to my /”neighbors/” over there on the left, or you can see my weblog neighborhood here. It’s a new tool added to Radio. This is a Good Thing.

Why, you ask, is this A Good Thing? For a variety of reasons, including courtesy to the hardworking bloggers I read, to let them know that they are doing A Good Thing. But an even better reason is that allows me, and you, to find sites and blogs we did not know about, and would like to, and even should.

Already I have newly subscribed to Future of the Book News, the blog of a really neat site that I didn’t and should have known about, and Scobleizer, both of whom should be part of my data fix.

Stories

I’ve started using, or trying to use the Story feature in Radio. Writing the Story was fairly simple, and submitting it was equally clear. I’d like to add a link to the story I just wrote to my Navigation links on the left. It’s listed in the Story page , but clicking the link there points to my local file, not the one on the web. Supposedly if I use the name of the Story in double quotes like this “About this Blog” Radio will transform it into a link.

Well, that worked. Now, in order to get the link and add it to my Navigator settings, I went to the page and copied the URL. There’s probably a much smarter way to do it than that, but it works.

It’s About Writing

Dave Winer, in an old Wired interview he doesn’t much like, is quoted as saying:

To me, the Web is not about getting rich. It’s about users, designers, stories, and pictures. It’s a writing environment..

I think he’s exactly right. Blogging, for all the ability to add or link to images, is one of the ways the primacy of text is still apparent on the net. Text is an efficient low-bandwidth form of data, and writing is an artform (well, other people’s writing is).

The next time I teach, whether it’s a freshman composition class or a literature class, I’ll definitely be blogging, and I’ll do my best to incorporate blogging into the syllabus. People take their writing far more seriously when they know they have readers, and when writing is made public, it suddenly is taken far more seriously.