Blogging their hearts out

Emily Nussbaum analyzed high school journaling in the NY Times Magazine Sunday. I was expecting a boring and predictable mainstream media perspective on blogging, but her focus on high school students made this a worthwhile read. It provided a revealing view of a world which did not exist when I was agonizing my way through high school relationships.

In her article, My So-called Blog, she addresses the angst and the ecstasy of student blogging.

It seems, from her account, that the student blogs are primarily a means of communicating and perhaps diffusing emotional issues, rather than lists of links or essays.

This is probably because open communication of emotions as well as ideas can be a very positive experience. Certainly it is less harmful than bottling things up inside.

She reported that in this high school, bloggers belonged to different pools of bloggers, some with limited memberships and there were all sorts of unwritten rules/conventions about whose posts one might read or comment on.

Emily observed this about the student blogs: Blogging is a replication of real life: each pool of blogs is its own ecosystem, with only occasional links to other worlds. … And while there are exceptions, many journal writers exhibit a surprising lack of curiosity about the journals of true strangers. They’re too busy writing posts to browse.

She made reference to the positive changes that occur when students interact through these journals. High school blogging appears to develop maturity as well as creativity.

It will be most interesting to see what long range effects appear as these student writers emerge into adult society. They are used to having and creating their own news network, complete with comments.

Mainstream media and news may not interest them at all….

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0 Responses to Blogging their hearts out

  1. Trey says:

    Yeah, I ask myself frequently what the purpose of my blog is. My first entry addressed this question. Quite frankly, I still don’t know the answer to the question.

  2. Marie says:

    Wow, what a coincidence! My 8th grader just created her first blog last night and she already has two entries. I haven’t asked her yet if I could read it but my husband and I are encouraging her to write instead of talk on the telephone and IM. One of my jobs today was to find blogs with teenage authors to show her the different creative styles/options she has. Thanks for pointing me in the right direction.

  3. Yes, I have read some college blogs and they have their own little cliques just like in school. It is hard to penetrate their world if you do not belong to that blogging clique, but it is quite interesting to see these young people expressing themselves. gurl

  4. Carrie says:

    Is that the article which mentioned the Xanga blog service several times? I wasn’t able to link into it.

    Anyhow, my 2 cents, blogging can be helpful, valuable, or a total waste of time. I think it’s a creative expression and as long as the owner/author/writer is happy, that’s what matters. However, I started at Xanga and found it to be like a den of hate and cliques…not a great experience. Very odd place. Typepad and MT are great because it feels open and healthier.

    Great post 🙂

  5. Denny says:

    Oh, my… whatever gets them interesting in writing is wonderful…get them to write! But then think?… Well, but writing is important.

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