Thursday, April 7, 2011

Professor Jacobson Response

Professor Jacobson's talk was very interesting. He definitely covered all of the things that I was questioning in the way that his blogs function.

I thought his point about becoming "obsessed about traffic" was really interesting. I respect that he has been trying to avoid this, when a blogger is focused on the popularity of his or her blog it can tarnish the content. What I view as the innocence of blogs is that they have been uncorrupted by money or fame. The article in the NYT about youtube generating money makes some interesting points about this. It says that in the instance of Michael Buckley it has pushed him to improve his content and act more professionally. When we were talking with Professor Jacobson he was very honest with me when I asked him about political party lines and said that yes he does think about his readership subconsciously with charged issues. Right now he has managed to keep a balance between growth and content. He uses connections within the blog-o-sphere to grow. His questioning on whether to start pushing his blog for growth I feel would be a bad idea. Its not that I think he would fall to the greed of capitalism but I think the level of transparency he has created in his reporting would be compromised by the obsession of traffic.

I also keep coming back to the fact that he has chosen to approve his comments. I struggle with this because he seems to have a legitimate reason for this choice and he is still letting the dissenting voice through but, like he expressed, this represses dialogue which I think is one of the strong areas of his blog (peoples want to comment on it). To me the good is out weighing the bad. He has created a great platform for discussion, I'd really like to see him open up his comments just to see what the result would be. Beside increase in traffic I think that it would also increase the quality of statements.

Thank you for coming in Dr. Jacobson! It was really interesting.


  1. Kirsten:
    I also posted on your April 5 blog regarding Dr. Jacobsen. I suspect (I don't know, because I only know him through his blog) that the main reason he moderates comments is to weed out the vile and profane. I've seen plenty of profane comments on both lefty and righty blogs.
    I do find it interesting that you refer to "fall to the greed of capitalism" by wanting to grow. It pains me that the "progressive" mantra is that capitalism is bad, and any attempt to better oneself financially must be "greed." I fully expect that when you complete college, you will look for a job, and you might even wind up in the private sector. Then you will strive to improve, maybe even work towards a promotion, in which you will likely get a raise in pay. Otherwise you are going to take the education that you might have paid for (I say that not in a demenaing way, either you or someone else paid for it,) and volunteer your education and experience. In that case, you will need to rely on others to support you, and those others ultimately got their money thanks to capitalism. So it's not all bad.

  2. Well, I thought I commented on your April 5th post! I guess I left the page before posting. I menat to say that I had come over from Dr. Jacobsen's blog.