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Zounds! New "Dit-Dah" Lingo of Telegraph Operators Threatens Standard English! ;-)

I’m teaching a 200-level “Writing for the Internet” class, with students ranging from seniors to first-semester freshmen.  Our opening unit is on social, academic, and professional conventions, foregrounding the fact that the internet on which young people play and learn is the same internet in which the adults in their lives are teaching and working (and playing, and learning). Senior Denamarie Ercolani, responding to an April NYT article about the…

Old Media Mocks Mariotti's Newfound Disdain for Newspapers

High-profile sports columnist Jay Mariotti, who dramatically quit the Sun-Times, saying newspapers are a dying industry, seems to have fallen in love with the Web. His former old media comrades aren’t buying it. Roger Ebert: You signed a new contract, waited until days after the newspaper had paid for your trip to Beijing at great cost, and then resigned with a two-word e-mail: “I quit.”…. The fact that you saved…

YouTube Comment Snob

The possibilities make the mind reel. YouTube Comment Snob is a Firefox extension that filters out undesirable comments from YouTube comment threads. You can choose to have any of the following rules mark a comment for removal: More than # spelling mistakes: The number of mistakes is customizable, and the extension uses Firefox’s built-in spell checker. All capital letters No capital letters Doesn’t start with a capital letter Excessive punctuation…

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Old media under attack by bloggers and their ilk

My colleague Lee McClain passed this article on to me — via a post-it note attached to the dead-tree edition of the story. “Move over, mainstream media, it’s the voter’s turn,” says the blurb for an event called: “Tapping the Creative Community: The Power of Voter Generated Media.” To be sure, there are television satellite trucks parked in the parking lots around the Pepsi Center, blow-dried anchormen speaking earnestly into…

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What Is a Story?

As homework for another class, a student asked me to give her my definition of a story.  I didn’t pull out any narrative theory books to refine it, and I didn’t try to put any special cybertextual spin on it, which I would have done if I’d spent more time thinking about it.  Anyway, here’s here’s what I came up with. A story is a casually causally-connected sequence of events that…

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Why Doesn't Plagiarism Matter?

I remember the Biden law school incident. Not long after that, during the Clarence Thomas hearings, I remember reading that law school students were secretly photocopying homework assignments submitted by their arch enemies, in the hopes of one day using that information to torpedo a big political appointment. By choosing Joe Biden as his running mate, Barack Obama has insulted academics — students and teachers alike — a constituency that…

YouTube – Blender – 10 min crash course

I’m preparing to introduce a class of English majors to Blender3D. Many of the online tutorials I’ve found spend way too much time introducing the interface, which is of course worth some attention because it is non-standard, and in the days before YouTube, I remember being so confused by it that I gave up on Blender, only to come back again later when I found James Chronister’s awesome tutorial (sadly…

Ithakas 2006 Studies of Key Stakeholders in the Digital Transformation in Higher Education

From a recent study of university libraries. There’s plenty in this report on digital scholarship, print journals, and comparative approaches of the various disciplines. Neither faculty members nor librarians expect e-books to constitute a viable substitute for print books; they are more generally seen as complementary. Somewhat oddly given this low level of faculty interest in e-books, many librarians consider the provisioning of e-books an important role, and substantially more…