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Christina's LIS Rant
Saturday, January 19, 2008
  NC Science Blogging Conference: Real-time blogging in the marine sciences
Real-time blogging in the marine sciences. Discussion leaders are Kevin Zelnio, Karen James, Rick MacPherson, Peter Etnoyer and Jason Robertshaw.

On deep sea expeditions sponsored by NOAA, including real-time video transmitted from UUVs. Scientists on call – if the limited number who can be on the ship, but they can call scientists ashore who can look at the real-time video and then help the shipboard folks decide what to gather or look at more closely.

Got together in small groups to talk about what real-time blogging is, when it’s useful, and what the difference between real-time and live?
- someone from NC marine something (sea grant) or other (how to convince organization worthwhile, maybe not useful for everyday live, but for special events)
KJ – how do we know how are blogs are used and how they are valuable? very limited statistics, very few comments
RM – problem of organization vs. personal, blogging for the org, then become an official mouthpiece, NOAA people can’t comment per policy
- blogs are more than just opinionated diaries
PE- it’s important to put boundaries when you start out, (likes the idea of an event blog), gets more bang for the buck of the event
JR- hard to control the message when everyone has a cell phone and can report
KJ - scientists have personalities – but this has been under wraps
Folks from museum of life scientists – tried out in house first, then to membership, now to public... skeptics could see that it was ok. People think that what they do isn’t interesting, but it really can be.
Real time vs. live
- same?
- thought out vs. stream of consciousness

someone from nc17 – you think you don’t have something to say

How can we measure the impact of blogs?
- page views?
- can’t measure knowledge management
- can’t measure unless you have a purpose – so you can measure wrt a goal
- shouldn’t be all top down for measurements, if a kid enjoys a post maybe that means something more

what about corporations seeding comments and trying to sway the conversation pro industry
- example from mining near extinct vents (?), comments from scientists contracted to support mining operations caused them to be more careful – still outspoken but more careful

Maybe a use of the analytics are to understand how many lurkers – comments aren’t the only thing. This is sort of an old thing because politicians for every letter there are 100 people who feel the same way

RM- perceived value of providing a real time account. What are we adding by telling you about a day in our life.
What does this value then add to the awareness of the science. And how does that compare to value of peer reviewed paper or polished science program.
PE- maybe only 4 papers from a whole trip, but there is a lot of left over material, maybe not worth a whole paper but very interesting

CP- maybe we underestimate the recruiting purposes
KJ – yeah, and for all of science by making it seem accessible and done by real people.

concern from scientists that it will take away from peer reviewed work, and take away respect from

Jennifer (Shiftingbaselines) something to say about professional journalism and “vulgarity of narcissism” - risk of blogging, journalists do a real job filtering and making scientists look good – maybe the blog becomes about the personality and the science is lost

CP- maybe room for both
KJ- but the blog can also become raw materials for reporting

Lisa- community content manager who blogged about a positive experience, and then his post was published in the

Larry - Science education – emphasis on science as a process (not facts handed down from on high), real-time blogging could be really great for this

KJ- real-time blogging maybe can serve later to resolve controversy or for archival purposes.
RM- interesting that people are coming back to older posts

Pamela- uses scientific blogs in the classes (undergrad), a blogger she knows and who does good work, they can then read the full article alongside the blog and understand more.

KZ- pitfalls as real time bloggers?

KZ- how to make relevant
Roy- so much information, but hard to pick out and find the nuggets of info

CP – maybe carnivals and reviews have a fuction here?

Pamela- but who is the audience for the carnival? some are very heavy duty what’s new in science now.
KJ- comments that her blog is too hard for someone.. so what about jargon both of field and of blogging, also how do we avoid “vulgarity of narcissism”

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This is my blog on library and information science. I'm into Sci/Tech libraries, special libraries, personal information management, sci/tech scholarly comms.... My name is Christina Pikas and I'm a librarian in a physics, astronomy, math, computer science, and engineering library. I'm also a doctoral student at Maryland. Any opinions expressed here are strictly my own and do not necessarily reflect those of my employer or CLIS. You may reach me via e-mail at cpikas {at} gmail {dot} com.

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Christina Kirk Pikas

Laurel , Maryland , 20707 USA
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