Sunday, September 18, 2005

Academic Blog Survey

The following survey is for bloggers who are actual or aspiring academics (thus including students). It takes the form of a go-meme to provide bloggers a strong incentive to join in: the 'Link List' means that you will receive links from all those who pick up the survey 'downstream' from you. The aim is to create open-source data about academic blogs that is publicly available for further analysis. Analysts can find the data by searching for the tracking identifier-code: "acb109m3m3". Further details, and eventual updates with results, can be found on the original posting:

Simply copy and paste this post to your own blog, replacing my survey answers with your own, as appropriate, and adding your blog to the Link List.

Important (1) Your post must include the four sections: Overview, Instructions, Link List, and Survey. (2) Remember to link to every blog in the Link List. (3) For tracking purposes, your post must include the following code: acb109m3m3

Link List (or 'extended hat-tip'):
1. Philosophy, et cetera
2. Add a link to your blog here


Age - 20
Gender - Male
Location - Christchurch, New Zealand
Religion - None
Began blogging - March 2004
Academic field - Philosophy (not yet specialized)
Academic position [tenured?] - undergraduate student [so, no]

Approximate blog stats
Rate of posting - daily
Average no. hits - 250/day
Average no. comments - 10/day
Blog content - 90% academic, 10% political, 0% personal.

Other Questions
1) Do you blog under your real name? Why / why not?
- Yes. I'm generally proud to claim authorship of my blog's content.

2) Do colleagues or others in your department know that you blog? If so, has anyone reacted positively or negatively?
- Yes. I've received some positive feedback.

3) Are you on the job market?
- No, not for a few years yet.

4) Do you mention your blog on your CV or other job application material?
- Yes.

5) Has your blog been mentioned at all in interviews, tenure reviews, etc.? If so, provide details.
- n/a.

6) Why do you blog?
- Mainly for the intellectual benefits: it's fun, allows me to develop ideas, have interesting discussions, etc. (Of course, if the potential name recognition, etc., proves beneficial as I progress in academia, then that would be an added bonus. But I don't know how likely that is.)

Additional remarks:
Thanks to Jonas for the original idea of investigating pseudonymity in academic blogs, and Rebecca for many of the questions about the career impact of blogging.

If you have an academic blog, please do consider participating in this go-meme. I think the results could prove quite valuable and interesting. To get the ball rolling, I'm going to nominate Brandon, The Little Professor, and (since he did so well in spreading the last one) P.Z. Myers. But others are most welcome to join in too!

Finally, if you end up analyzing the results of this memetic survey, let me know and I'll update this post with a link to your analysis.


  1. Now I am not trying to be nit-picky but isn't this blog implicitly personal? They are your opinions, what you think is important, relevant and interesting. Ipso facto, it seems to me, this is a predominantly if not 100% personal blog.

  2. Well, by that criterion everything we do or say is implicitly "personal". But for current purposes I want this category to be mutually exclusive with the other two ('academic' and 'political'). What I really mean is that I don't blog about my "personal life" - e.g. cats, family, friends, etc. (I was hoping the meaning would be clear enough from the context, but I guess it doesn't hurt to clarify.)

  3. Hmm, I may do this, but I'll have to do it twice - once on each blog as the two are very different.

    Are we supposed to keep adding more and more links (beyond three)?

  4. You just take all the links from the post where you found the meme, and add your own to the end of the list. That's all. So yes, whoever picks it up after you will then have an even longer list, since they will add their own blog to it, and so forth. But you don't have to update your own post, or anything annoying like that.

  5. How about tagging people to continue the meme?

  6. OK, I did it:

  7. Sure, tag whomever you want, that's optional though.

  8. Seems like an interesting project Richard. Why not join Blog Scholar ( (non-profit academic blogging portal from the University of London) and add a content piece about it, encouraging others to participate. We are always on the lookout for interesting projects related to academic blogging.


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