A final thought….

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This is a moment of reflection on the blogging experience. I believe that the purpose of this exercise was to create a forum for learning and sharing together. An approximation of a peer to peer experience, of creating a commons.

Now we come to the end of this experience and I have to ask myself and all of you whether we acheived this aim?

I’ve been looking back over the entries on this blog, looking particularly at the posts. Some people have gone to an amazing amount of effort of researching their posts, constructing a full argument. Yet so many of these have no comments in response, or only one or two at best. In fact, the maximum number of comments on any one post is five. When I finish this, I’m going to go through and add a comment to all those posts that currently have no response in recognition of the efforts that everyone has made in their contributions. I’m not doing that to be a martyr, or to increase my word count for my essay. I’m just doing it because everyone has made the effort to say something and I think we all deserve a response to our work.

But how does this discourse of mine relate to sustainability and the commons? How does it relate to whether we achieved what we set out to do? My point is this. We have all participated in creating this blog. But to me the commons, and commoning implies some degree of partnership work. I’m not sure that this is what we’ve seen. How much debate has been stimulated on these blogs? How often have we seen comments in response to comments, rather than all comments relating to the initial post? Massimo suggested that we share potential essay topics via the blog. We haven’t. And as I said before, how many posts received no response – work unacknowledged? We’ve given information, but to what extent have we really shared?

I wonder to what degree this is a product of the blog being linked to our assignment. Would we have been more interactive, more willing to challenge, to create debate, even to be wrong if we weren’t conscious of being marked at the end.

There is also the question of sustainability. I know this wasn’t one of the purposes of this exercise, but I think it is pertinent to question how many people would consider continuing to contribute to this blog once the semester has finished?

I know I’m forever questioning things, and I don’t mean to undermine this exercise. Having never blogged before, I actually found this an interesting experience. But as the first students of this course, it can only be beneficial for take some time to reflect together about what we have learned, demonstrated and acheived in creating this blog.

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One Response to “A final thought….”

  1. Kawsu Ceesay Says:

    I hope that we will continue to post entries and comments on this blog even after this semester. The weblog has served as a good platform for contributions from the participating students. Massimo should still maintain access to the blog for all until we finish the MSc programme. I have argued that the kind of peer to peer we are having on this blog can eventual raise issues which might become full fledge research topics for the students later on in the academic year.

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