Blog Post

Introduction-Hello!

Hello fellow scholars!  I am very excited to be joining the HASTAC community, and I look forward to collaborating with everyone on some innovative ideas.  I just wanted to describe my interests regarding blogging and other technological advances.  I am a 3L at Cornell Law School, and for the past two years, I have been on the staff of the Journal of Law and Public Policy, first as blogger and then a blog editor.  The JLPP is one of the few law journals that actually has a blog, and I was one of the pioneering bloggers that chose to post a series of scholarly blogs instead of writing a traditional law note (if anyone would like to check out my blog, it can be found at jlpp.org).  The JLPP blog, however, was looked down upon by some of the more conservative law review members, and I always wondered why that was.  My posts, and those of my fellow bloggers, were just as scholarly as notes would be, and they were shorter and more easily accessible to the lay reader than the morass of legalese found in most notes.  The blog was just as capable of illuminating readers and stimulating intellectual debate as the print journal, so why look down upon it?  These concerns have led me to want to further the scholarly status of blogs and make them more acceptable to the academic community.

 

I also wanted to look at how technology is used cross-culturally.  For example, blogging and posting on sights like Facebook and Twitter is very popular in the US, but is it as popular in other countries?  As a senior at my undergraduate university, the University of Pennsylvania, I had the opportunity to study abroad at the University of Western Australia.  While there, I discovered that the students at UWA were not nearly as addicted to email and Facebook as my UPenn colleagues, although they did use them.  Additionally, I foiund that sites like the Australian analogue to Blackboard existed and were used by the faculty, and there were some efforts to make use of scholarly social media like blogs, but perhaps not as much as here in the US.  I can only speak from my own experience, and that was several years ago.  Now, I am studying abroad at the University College of London, and the faculty use a virtual online community even more extensively than I find typical at Cornell.  Some of the professors didn't even know the answers to some questions asked at orientation, instead directing students to the website, and at least one professor suggested creating an academic blog.  Thus, blogging and social media are used in at least these countries, and I would be curious to know about efforts to use technology to create scholarly online communities in other countries. 

 

Finally, I am also a member of the LawMeets Student Advisory Board, which is trying to create an online community to foster transactional lawyering, which is not given as much attention in the classical law school education.  It has online meets, where students compete in a faux legal situation or contract negotiation, and it has recently announced its first Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) on mergers and acquisitions.  I will attach the information if anyone is interested.  Please let me know if you would like to collaborate on any projects regarding these or other issues, and I look forward to working with you all!

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