The Chronicle of Higher Education has an interesting piece discussing the phenomenon of “scholars who blog.”
In their skeptical moments, academic bloggers worry that the medium smells faddish, ephemeral. But they also make a strong case for blogging’s virtues, the foremost of which is freedom of tone. Blog entries can range from three-word bursts of sarcasm to carefully honed 5,000-word treatises. The sweet spot lies somewhere in between, where scholars tackle serious questions in a loose-limbed, vernacular mode.
Blogging also offers speed; the opportunity to interact with diverse audiences both inside and outside academe; and the freedom to adopt a persona more playful than those generally available to people with Ph.D.s.
Several notable bloggers, many on OTB’s blogroll, are mentioned or even interviewed.
(Hat tip: Invisible Adjunct, herself quoted in the piece)