January 11, 2007

Talking about blogging tonight in Naperville.

Take note:
North Central College will host two professional bloggers — Ann Althouse of the University of Wisconsin Law School and Eric Zorn, columnist for the Chicago Tribune — in a panel discussion about the effectiveness of ... blogs, in public discourse. The free discussion, titled “Blogging: Simultaneous Translation,” will be held on Thursday, Jan. 11, at 7:30 p.m. in Koten Chapel at Kiekhofer Hall, 329 E. School St. [Naperville, IL].

If you're in the area stop by. We'll be taking questions from the audience.

UPDATE: That was fun. I'm back in Madison, arriving here at midnight.

30 comments:

Ricardo said...

The operative word here is "effectiveness". How do you judge the effectiveness of increased chatter? When is increased chatter just ... well ... increased chatter? And how do you demonstrate that the public discourse has been affected in any way other than quantity?

Anonymous said...

Just 15 miles from where I'm sitting. Wish I'd have known earlier so I could have made arrangements.

Ann Althouse said...

Feel free to post questions here. I'll be checking the comments throughout the day.

Maxine Weiss said...

The Chattering class:

No power, no gravitas.....only their overblown self-referentialism to see them through.

Peace Maxine

Fritz said...

Heated discourse rather than violence. I'd say it is a positive. btw Make sure you give yourself enough time. Your Route 59 exit off the NW Tollway is a heavily congested highway.

Too Many Jims said...

I can't make it but I would think it would be good to talk about your views of comments given that many bloggers do not use them. Also will they be posting audio after the event.

Even outside that forum I'd be interested to hear why you have decided to take a more active role in moderating comments. (If you posted on this and I missed it, please point me to the post.)

I think you became more active at about the same time a reader drew your attention to the fact that the reader was blocked from your blog by third party software. Did you begin moderating more actively because (1)you were worried about certain naughty words being used or (2) did you tire of some the anti-social comments that were populating the comments area? If it is (1), I would be surprised if the use of the "f word" was what was getting your blog blocked by the third party software.

Mark Daniels said...

Did you know that you were a "professional" blogger?

By the way, I like Naperville and the entire DuPage County area.

Mark

Anonymous said...

Out of curiosity, Ann, do you regard yourself as a professional blogger?

hdhouse said...

Will you be the one sitting on the far right hand side of the stage?

AJ Lynch said...

Looks like you are taking the roundabout way to avoid those cwazy libertarians in downtown Chicago :)

Sean said...

Two questions:

What is a "professional" blogger?

Do you think blogs are effective in public discourse (which I take to mean, effective in influencing debates about public policy)? Mostly people just talk past each other, in my view. The blogs I like best are the ones like this one that achieve a literary effect, the projection of a persona whom one feels one knows, just as (to compare greater to lesser) one feels one knows Socrates or Pip (from Great Expectations).

Anonymous said...

I've always admired Eric Zorn. You are lucky you will have a chance to meet him. I remember reading some of his articles online about the Rolando Cruz case and others about the inequities in the way the death penalty was administered in Illinois, and they were instrumental in forcing that state to re-evaluate their criminal justice system in the specific area of the death penalty. So he's already made a difference by what he's written. It certainly had an impact on my own thinking about the death penalty-- there was a time when I supported it, but changed largely because of the issue of whether innocent people could be sent to the executioner. Zorn was a big part of my 'education' on the issue.

I guess if I had a question that I'd ask him about blogging it would be whether he feels that bloggers are/should be expected to be held to the same level of scrutiny that published journalists should be. I think I alluded in a post to the Jason Leopold scandal, and if a journalist did what Leopold did and kept pushing harder and harder on a story, almost as if trying to 'balance' out the weight of all the people who were calling him on it for being false, that journalist would be drummed out of the business. But Leopold is still writing for truthout.org (though as a Liberal, I cancelled my subscription to truthout after the Rove story last year because I found his behavior unacceptable, when a simple 'mea culpa' could have defused the whole issue.)

Ann Althouse said...

"Professional blogger" is not my phrase. Is writing a profession? You're a professional writer if you make money at it, even if it's not your main income, I'd say. So I do make money at this. I consider myself a professional writer, so why not "professional blogger"? Anyway, as I said, it wasn't my phrase.

And: hello from Naperville!

Ann Althouse said...

By the way, I'm writing this on a non-Mac computer. I don't think I've ever written on an non-Mac computer before. It's eerie!!!

vbspurs said...

Question:

One of my premises is that blogs are the closest medium writers had to being the pamphleteers of the 1700s.

Do you agree with that idea? Or generally disagree?


(Like pamphlets, blogs are easily diffused writing to the masses, quick to print, quick to distribute, quickest to read, as opposed to stodgy newspapers and the like. And blogs like pamphlets, are often most salient and influential when political in nature. Is it too much to ask that there be a Thomas Paine amongst the bunch? Perhaps only time will tell)

- Also, what has been your greatest reward blogging, to date?

Good luck.

Cheers,
Victoria

Anonymous said...

By the way, I'm writing this on a non-Mac computer. I don't think I've ever written on an non-Mac computer before. It's eerie!!!

It's always tough leaving the dark side. It's ok to leave the Mac behind. :-)

Gahrie said...

I don't think I've ever written on an non-Mac computer before. It's eerie!!!

That settles it. You are definitely a liberal.

Ruth Anne Adams said...

Writing on a non-Mac computer is a Superior experience for me.

Quick...find a quip for Huron, Ontario and Michigan.

Bruce Hayden said...

By the way, I'm writing this on a non-Mac computer. I don't think I've ever written on an non-Mac computer before. It's eerie!!!

Its really not that hard to get used to. I did it when my employer at the time, Motorola, switched to MSFT systems. It wasn't that hard. I have a harder time going back to Macs since that they still only have one mouse button.

sonicfrog said...

Off topic - but important if it pans out!

Police Reunion!

Todd said...

Ruth Anne: "Writing on a non-Mac computer is a Superior experience for me."

Huron dope. [Say it aloud. And I don't care if you don't get it, I think it's hilarious.]

vbspurs said...

Writing on a non-Mac computer is a Superior experience for me.

BTW, I thought Ann had gone by way of Lake Ontario to NAPIERVILLE, QUEBEC!

So much for Europeans being better at geography than Americans.

Shyeah, like you think an average Frenchman can point out Duluth in a map?

Cheers,
Victoria

vbspurs said...

Police Reunion!

COOL NEWS! Thanks Sonic.

P.S.: I'm still waiting of A-ha.

Cheers,
Victoria

Palladian said...

"It wasn't that hard. I have a harder time going back to Macs since that they still only have one mouse button."

Not true, just get a two button mouse for your Mac.

Mark Daniels said...

When I put professional in quotes ("professional"), I wasn't being disparaging. I simply had no idea that you were making any money at this. I figured Glenn Reynolds might be making a little from their blogging, simply because of the peripheral stuff he does--the MSNBC gig, etc. Anyway, good for you!

We switched to a Mac several years ago. I'll never go back to a PC, if I can help it!

Mark

Ruth Anne Adams said...

Todd: Excellent!

peter hoh said...

I was hoping to find a non-Mac computer with which I'd hit it off, but it's a Michigan.

Maxine Weiss said...

The idea that just making money at something renders you a professional is absurd.

According to the Society of American Journalists.....

You have to be :

1. Fully Underwritten

and

2. Paid Subscriptions

...in order to be considered professional.

That goes for freelance, and staff journalists.

Citizen journalism, which comes the closest to blogging, doesn't count.

Peace, Maxine

vbspurs said...

Not true, just get a two button mouse for your Mac.

Right, Bruce. Just get Apple's Mighty Mouse.

Although I own a Dell, my mouse is the ostensibly one-buttoned, but in reality, two-buttoned MM.

Sleek, elegant, and with a scroll button that will have you using it immediately, even if you never have used it on any mouse, before (like me).

It even has Bluetooth -- if you have a Mac.

Cheers,
Victoria

MadisonMan said...

The idea that just making money at something renders you a professional is absurd.

That's what all Olympic Athletes say.