Why blog?: an activity for the Connected Researcher workshop 23 February 2012

The RIN report  "Social media: a guide for researchers"

The RIN report "Social media: a guide for researchers"

The Research Information Network’s Social Media: a guide for researchers states, “almost all the researchers interviewed for this project maintain a blog of some kind”.  These researchers, with demanding schedules and the pressures that academic life bring, wouldn’t be blogging aimlessly.  So what would motivate them to make time to publish their thoughts online?

Spend a few moments thinking about what potential you see for blogging.  Would blogging offer you an opportunity to reflect, to diarise?  Somewhere to collate material you find online?  A chance to share your ideas?  Would you see blogging as a great networking or learning opportunity?  Share your thoughts informally in a comment below and we’ll discuss them together.  Rather than posting one long, considered comment, you may chose to post a number of short comments, so others may respond and you may engage in an online conversation.

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23 thoughts on “Why blog?: an activity for the Connected Researcher workshop 23 February 2012

  1. Looking back on my PhD I kind of wish I had blogged about the research experience, but even though it’s a bit too late for that now I still think it could be relevant to look back on and use blogging as a step forward to future research possibilities.

    • I personally feel it is safe to blog about the contents of one’s research until after one has safely finished the PhD as there could be hidden pitfalls associated with self plagiarism or sharing too much online that could affect future publications. So it’s OK. It’s never to late to blog anyway.

    • Could it perhaps be more useful for people in post-doc/academic positions rather than PhD students? Or is it a way for PhD students to reach beyond their normal community?

    • ‘New communities’ is the key. Some of the dinosaurs in my field who are great in my field are simply not online and give OHP presentations …….lord help me in my endeavour to reach out and get that great job

  2. Im not really sure what my main reason would be for blogging, yes, it would aide me in putting my research OUT THERE but, mostly I think I’d use it as a means of sharing my thoughts about doing research. My only concern is having the time to do it.

      • no diapers at the moment….. but I think with blogging if you are going to do it you have to be dedicated and regularly update for it to be worthwhile and make the most of it. Plus I may use it as a means of procrastination.

  3. I’m planning to start a blog to (hopefully) receive comments and feedback on my opinions and ideas about existing research in my field. As an aspiring science communicator and journalist I’m also hoping to develop a network of peers to potentially help bolster future career opportunities

    • Yep, a future career is what I want and bolstering it is definitely required. I hope the blog HELPS. I just have to try and come across as a serious researcher who knows her stuff. I just don’t want to come across as desperate but I need that great research job.

  4. If people started blogs are they thinking about making them subject-discipline specific, or try and reach out to a wider audience? What do people think about this? Pros/Cons?

    • I have a blog but it’s not on my subject, I feel like I’m not established enough to create a subject blog. Perhaps in my final year I could go in this direction?

    • Chris Anderson’s Long Tail concept addresses this in a way. The idea that collectively more people will read a smaller number of blogs than the total of people reading the most popular blogs.

  5. I may have five main reasons to blog. 🙂

    1. To publicise my research or just an opinion on the research topic and get some feedback.
    2. To archive research blog and share my research experience.
    3. To build an online profile and perhaps connect with experts.
    4. To practice writting especially in English which is not my first language.
    5. To make an immediate contribute of my research or my thought to the public.

  6. I think blogging is a useful learning an networking tool, it allows scientists to share their research in a much less formal setting than in an academic journal , and lets you share opinions on certain matters that you may not be able to voice elsewhere.

      • Here it is:

        Find @researchwhisper and @mark_carrigan good people to follow on Twitter. In fact have ended up following a lot of people who are actually commenting on social media in education/research. The Guardian and Times often have good articles too.

  7. A blog would be a great learning opportunity for me – a reflexive means to illustrate my ideas and thought processes with reference to less tradional ‘academic’ resources such as photos, pictures – a way to map out my progress visually and compliment my natural learning style.

  8. Pingback: Why blog?: what the 2012 workshop participants thought | connectedresearcher

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