Posting content to a blog may have gotten Julie Powell a book deal that in turn lead to an international best seller and a blockbuster movie (starring Meryl Streep, no less), but updating a personally maintained website with random thoughts isn’t generally perceived as a fast track to academic tenure.
So if you’re a scholar trying to find time to write the peer-reviewed journal articles that will help solidify your job prospects, maintaining a word press site may seem self-indulgent, dressed-up procrastination, or simply a complete waste of time.
But York University PhD candidate and experienced blogger Melonie Fullick offers a different perspective in the current issue of University Affairs, published by the Association of Universities and Colleges of Canada. She asks, and then provides some thoughtful answers to the question: Should you enter the academic blogosphere?
Acknowledging the disincentives, she nevertheless offers some compelling reasons for considering the social media form as a useful complement to other writing. And she practices what she preaches, maintaining not only her own blog, Speculative Diction, but also tweeting regularly about issues relating to Canadian education policy.