Anne Alexander talks about social media and ethics research at this month’s Social Scholar seminar

Later this week Anne Alexander from the CRASSH Centre, University of Cambridge will be talking about social media and ethics research at the Social Scholar seminar.  It should prove to be an interesting and thought provoking session.  How can social media be used for research purposes?  What problems arise? 

In anticipation of the session I asked Anne if she thought that blogging was a useful pursuit for academics.  This was her answer.
Anne-Alexander-370newLike any other genre of social media publishing, blogging can be useful for academics, or it can be a waste of time. It can be a good mechanism to engage with scholarly or public debate, to ‘think aloud in public’, to establish a online presence for your work or to demonstrate that the public funding for your research career has been well-spent. Or it can eat up a lot of your time and effort to little effect. So I think the key thing probably is to ask yourself what you want to achieve by blogging in the first place, and at which stage in the research process you are going to concentrate your efforts.

I also think that blogging can be an effective tool to help build better networks. I’m designing a new course for graduate historians at Cambridge University, which uses the creation of a collective blog as a teaching platform to explore social media. We are calling it ‘an experiment in learning-by-doing’: like all experiments it will be interesting to see if it works.

Click here for further details about the Digital Historians course.  More details about Anne Alexander can be found on her CRASSH profile page.  For full details about the Social Scholar seminar check the SAS Blog Social Scholar section where you will find details of this and previous sessions, a more detailed interview with Anne about her session, and videos from the previous sessions.

Date: Wednesday 4 December 2013
Time: 1pm-2pm
Event: FREE Public Lunchtime Seminar
Title: The ethics of Social Media publishing: a brief introduction for researchers
Speaker: Anne Alexander (CRASSH, University of Cambridge)
Chair: Jules Winterton (Director of the Institute of Advanced Legal Studies)

Blogging History slide show

On Tuesday I talked to the Archives & Society seminar at the Institute of Historical Research under the title Blogging History: What are the uses of blogs in academic and archival settings?.  I’ll talk more about this session in a future post (and talk a bit about the research I undertook in preparation for it) but for now here’s a copy of the slide show that I used.  I will also explain the Dalek’s!

Forthcoming presentation tonight – Blogging academic and archival History

rosie_the_bloggerLater today I will be talking about academic and archive blogs to the Archives & Society seminar at the Institute of Historical Research.  The talk takes as its beginning the work I have been doing for the Blogging for Historians project, but also goes a little deeper by examining how archives around the UK use blogs and social media (or not in some cases).

I have surveyed the websites of 113 archives including local, national, ecclesiastical, and commercial and checked to see who blogs, what they do with the blog, and what other social media outlets they have.  I would say that the findings are not that unexpected, but do reveal some interesting trends.  I would also say that this is just a preliminary study.  The idea would be to take the research further, look even deeper, and find out more.

If you would like to join us the seminar takes place at 5.45pm tonight at Senate House (University of London).  We will be meeting at 5.45pm.


The Anti-Social Scholar (and how not to become one) – The Social Scholar

Julian Harrison from the British Library discussed the Medieval Manuscripts Blog to the Social Scholar seminar on 23 October 2013.  The focus of his talk was on why he believes it is important for blogs to be used as part of any academic research project.  

The SAS Blog has  further information about this talk including a collection of the Twitter feed here, and a summary of the event itself here.