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« Annotated | Main | This Week's Acquisitions »

July 08, 2005


Sherman Dorn

Once again, the foolishness of the CHE's anonymous jobs columns shows itself. Why is a search committee spending its valuable time reading a candidate's blog instead of the candidate's submitted writing? Or hunting for other articles intead of Googling the candidate?

Moreover, the fact that someone does not blog now does not mean that the person won't blog in the future—making the concerns about airing departmental laundry sound pretty paranoid.


Consider the average pool of job candidates. Very few of them blog. Fewer of those do so under their real name. The chance of many ending up as finalists in any given search is very small, much smaller than the chance of someone being annoyed by blogs in general and engaging in a wish-fulfilment exercise that the Chronicle would find commercially viable.

Scott Eric Kaufman

See Miriam, I'm not crazy. My blogging will be the academic death of me. I wonder what future search committees will think of my attempts at analyzing the conventions of academic essay-writing, or professional trends, or issues related to my dissertation? Surely that won't be the sort of person I'd want to hire.

That said, Ivan the Tribbible's correct on one account: far easier to Google someone than find obscure journal articles.

Bourgeois Nerd

Who knew tribbles had time to write pieces about higher education, what with all the breeding and whatnot. I can picture Mr. Tribble, now: a big ball of fluff with glasses, clad in tweed...

Scott Eric Kaufman

Miriam, being the cad that I am, I trackbacked you twice after I'd cut my lame attempt to respond to your Star Trek reference. Have no fear! Your post inspired my tirade...but I had to excise you from it. Anxiety of influence and all, you know.


I finally got around to blogging about this myself. Mostly I'm offended by Tribble's nasty small-mindedness. Perhaps he, and not Professor Shrill, requires therapy?


I've said a lot of stuff on blogs that, subtracted from the context, looks very nasty indeed. I've also said a lot of stuff I'm genuinely not proud of ( including purposefully aggravating people and generally being trollish on blogs in order to gather sociological data for a school project), before I learnt to use aliases for more controversial statements and back in the heady days of year eleven when research ethics weren’t as high on my list of priorities as they should have been. I’ve had weird nightmares about someone looking up my name years later ( usually someone whom I have good reason not to offend) and running into some of this stuff. The good thing about blog comments though is that virtually everyone who comments or blogs frequently except those tragically rare souls, the genuinely intellectually responsible, have said some irredeemably stupid things while blogging at some time or another, so that’s a bit of a comfort.

Jon Fernquest

"A candidate's blog is more accessible to the search committee than most forms of scholarly output. It can be hard to lay your hands on an obscure journal or book chapter, but the applicant's blog comes up on any computer."

This is a the best argument I can see for adjusting ancient and venerable practices and start publishing online journals.

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