I still use blogs.setonhill.edu, which I started in 2003. Not for every class, but for most of my discussion-heavy in-person classes.
Weblogs@Harvard, as it was then known, was considered pioneering. Facebook didn’t yet exist. Social media was in its infancy. And starting a blog usually required some knowledge of code. Harvard’s blogging platform, now known as blogs.harvard.edu, made it easy.
The university was one of the first higher education institutions, if not the first, to provide such a platform. It served as an incubator for ideas, helped to make podcasting a thing and was a space for students, faculty and staff to “cut their teeth” on the World Wide Web.
This era of internet history is now coming to an end. The Berkman Klein Center announced last month that it would no longer manage the platform. A new platform will be created and managed by Harvard University’s information technology department. But how much of the old platform’s content will be preserved or transferred to the new platform remains unclear.