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The History Curmudgeon—On Virtue And Vice In Blogging

September 3, 2008

I have been both amazed and disappointed, at times, with the power of blogging. This story shows something of that power—in its beauty and ugliness. New media occasionally reinforces the notion that it’s actually not the medium, to paraphrase Marshall McLuhan, but the people behind the messages. What we’re doing to humanize and add complexity to our quaint “global village” is what makes weblogs great.

As professional educators and historians, we should not promote the crassness inherent in delivering sound “byte” blows, slipping in snarky snippets, and promoting silly dramas. This is one reason I’m not a fan of the so-called Ambrose Bierce history gossip weblog. There’s nothing like reducing the profession to a soap opera.

Maybe I’m a just a curmudgeon, but that kind of “storytelling” is a waste of time of everyone’s time. – TL


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