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Poet Posts...

I have several blogs, some public and some not-so-public. This blog is specifically for ramblings on "digital writing" and how we might use new technologies to improve the writing skills of students. My other blogs range from photos of my cats to updates on life in Minnesota so my friends can share in my adventures. In some ways, these are the same uses students have: vanity sites (who else cares about my cats?) and keeping in touch with friends. The question we need to ask is if using these technologies can improve writing in ways other tools might not. Or, are we merely entertaining students with new toys, deceiving ourselves into thinking what is more exciting must result in more learning.

I am a skeptic, having been a business owner, corporate executive, and college administrator. Technology might not only do little good, it might encourage bad habits and mistaken notions of what is acceptable when writing later in life.

My first required posts will be this weekend. I've never bothered with YouTube or online videos because video tends to hurt my eyes and cause literal physical discomfort. I have seen YouTube videos on television and wonder why people would seek out such things. Let us hope the video blogs I view are somewhat more appealing. Just seeing what is listed as "most popular" on YouTube and MySpace should scare any social critic.

I'm not sure asking students to frequent sites best known for videos of profane comedy and stupid stunts ending badly is wise. Maybe I can be convinced otherwise, but I am a skeptic.


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