Sunday, October 27, 2013

Moratorium on Flashbacks.

For quite a while Fab has run RYS and CM Flashbacks on the weekend. There's almost nothing he loathed more than an empty day. But they draw few hits and comments.

Do away with the practice? Keep at it? What do you think?




PS: Comments are now off, because, like, well, duh.

70 comments:

  1. I like them, especially the older ones.

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  2. I think they might draw fewer comments because they're not something we can immediately help with or offer advice for. Occasionally we'll get one where the poster is still here (like the Monkey one a few months ago) and we can ask how it went, but otherwise it's just a reminder. That said, I like reading them and I always click over from my RSS reader.

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  3. It's possible they draw few hits & comments because it's the weekend.
    I'm always happy to see them myself.
    If weekends are slow how about doing a "real goddamned mail" with the previous week's weirdness?
    I never post and don't comment a lot because I'm in a fortunate situation, but nothing makes me more grateful than real goddamned mail (apart from the efforts all the various mods have put into the site, that is).

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    1. If the Mods can take time to do this, I like the suggestion of having real goddamned mail more often (if weekly is too often, then at least once a month).

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  4. A hot dog, some bourbon, and a flashback: Good way to spend 10 minutes on a Sunday.

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  5. I glance through them, but don't often comment because they seem to simply be filler that don't require comments (i.e. old situation, therefore the urgency to comment has passed; person who wrote it isn't even participating anymore).

    I'm OK with weekend hiatuses (hiatii?) for the blog, too.

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  6. I cannot think of a weekend when I wasn't do school work. Nor can I think of a weekend when I wasn't reading CM. Of course there's nothing to read on the weekend. You could make the page a weekly, maybe. That way there'd be a few posts to read, and people wouldn't have to worry that they were missing stuff.

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  7. What we need are flashbacks within flashbacks within flashbacks.

    Flash-ception!

    [BWAAAAM!!!]

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    1. Wait, does this mean you're really a flashback in a flashback coming back to haunt a flashback?

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  8. There are often more new posts on any given day than I have time to comment on (before they disappear from the front page). Therefore I give the "flashbacks" low priority, both for reading and for commenting on. The point is, for the new posts, somebody who is still around took the time and effort to compose something, and would probably be happy to see some meaningful comments. It must be disheartening for them to see their posts bumped from page one by old stuff, so I for one am for stopping this practice (or saving it for really slow weeks when there is little or nothing new.) Ditto for "vidshizzles", etc.

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    1. I can't recall anyone ever saying we had too many posts. If there are three on a day, I consider it a flood. It is very rare there is more than 2 on the entire weekend.

      What would people think of doing the page once monthly?

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    2. Wait: no. There aren't too many posts. Maybe on the ONE DAY when we featured "the others," but generally, aren't we averaging 2-3 posts a day, and sometimes with one of those being a re-run?

      I'm good with a flashback once a month (if that's what you meant). I hope that's what you meant: Like "FLASHBACK WEEKEND" every third weekend of the month or something.

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    3. Most blogs only have one post a day at the most. I read some that only total 5-10 a month. I like that much better. You have way too many articles each day. There's no way to keep up with any of it.

      I also think reducing the number of people who post. You might try to focus on something like 5 people in charge of posting for the blog. Most of the very successful Chronicle blogs are like that and that would be a good model to emulate.

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    4. No one says every single post has to be commented on.

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  9. WHAT THE FUCK IS GOING ON?

    Once a month? No more VidShizzles? Too many posts?

    HAS ANYONE GONE FUCKING CRAZY?

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    1. I, too, like the vidshizzles. They add flava to the page. Why TAKE AWAY SOMETHING NEW? It's not like Cal posts OLD vidshizzled.

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  10. I think once a month would be a great idea, first of the month, 10-12 good posts. There's no need for the pictures or the videos or the back and forth arguments.

    Good luck with what you decide.

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    1. Bad, bad idea. Once a month means the regular daily community we have would be relegated to a once-a-month comment page with no interaction. For that kind of a page, just read a monthly journal. That's not what this community is about. We engage in conversation and back-and-forth dialogue that informs each other. The whole community feel of interaction would be lost if we only posted once a month.

      Again, if we are talking about posting RYS Flashbacks once a month, I'm cool with that, but to cut back ALL posting to once a month sounds ridiculous.

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  11. Once a month would be perfect. And you could greatly reduce the number of overall posts. You might consider having an editor or reader review the posts that come in over the month and then just print the best ones. There are a lot of posts that are - frankly - unnecessary.

    I think that would be the smart way to go.

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    1. How many of you regulars would take the time to craft a post knowing that, in reality, it's likely to never be posted on here? I wouldn't bother taking the time to write a post that's important to me knowing it's likely to never ever be seen; I get enough rejection from the academic journals I submit things to.

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  12. I vote for a monthly page, too, with the best 10 posts that are submitted. That's something I'd be a lot more likely to read.

    Now there are way too many posts to keep up. I don't know who any of these people are and they all talk back and forth about things that I could never catch up with.

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    1. So now it's a case of people who don't really participate in the community dictating how the community should run? I'm so confused here.

      If you can't keep up, then just jump in when you can. But to limit OTHER people's interaction because you can't keep up seems ludicrous to me.

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    2. And by "you," I don't mean you, Darla. Sorry, I posted it here but didn't mean it to go here.

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  13. I guess it boils down to what we want the blog to be. Is it meant to be a place where people can come when they need to feel sharedness, or is it now going to be like a place where only vetted posts get published and people comment and go away for a month, losing the overall community feel?

    Once a month would mean drastically changing the whole feel of the blog and the community. No longer would Thirsty's work, because the urgency of feedback would be lost and they would end up being more hypothetical and theoretical since they'd have to be overall arching questions we have rather than daily feedback type questions. Most of the timely things I find out on here that are going on in higher ed couldn't be featured anymore because by the time the once-a-month rolls around, they're no longer relevant. So I'd be way less informed about what's going on (but that may just be me).

    Moreover, people who comment daily or who interact daily would lose the connection to the blog. It's easy to skip a day or two, but if you skip a month, then forget to come back the next month, pretty soon, no continuity is left and it just becomes a blog where even more "insiders" only post once a month and then we wander off to be even more miserable for the rest of the month.

    Why go from daily to suddenly ONCE A MONTH?!!!

    We went from "we don't have enough posts" to "we have too many posts" in 3.2 seconds flat. WHAAAAAAAT??????!!!!!

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    1. If there were not enough posts once a month you could write your own and then post a link, if you were one of the 5 official writers.

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    2. Wait, now we're going to have OFFICIAL WRITERS? WHAT? I thought everyone was crying about being left out and not being one of the "in-group" so we did a whole "others" day so everyone could feel included. Now we're proposing going the complete opposite and only having give "chosen" people to write and represent the blog? How is that inclusive at all?

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    3. But if we picked the best writers we'd have a better overall reading experience. I can only speak for myself and the others who agree with me but I don't have the time to read all of the posts now especially when a lot of them are reruns from the other blog that I didn't read, top ten lists, questions, and videos. All of that could be done away with in favor of more scholarly articles about pedagogy. I'd be more likely to read that, especially if it was a monthly.

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    4. Just read the Chronicle for that. People who want to just read once a month can still just read once a month.

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  14. None of this can be serious. Someone tell me that Terry or Cal is playing a joke.

    I will blow up the earth if this page goes monthly.

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  15. Once a month?

    Why so busy? How about a quarterly?

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    1. While we're at it, let's just cut back to once a year. FUUUUUUCK.

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    2. Really, that's too common. If people have to wait a decade or two for the next post, they'll value it more. Jeezuz.

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  16. Looks to me like the consensus is for a reduced set of posts and something like a monthly schedule.

    I think you could still allow more than 5 writers, but the suggestion to limit it to only the good posts makes a lot of sense.

    When would this start? Could someone who hasn't been a regular send in some sample essays to be considered for the November issue?

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  17. What's everyone talking about? I understood the RGM's proposal "doing the page once a month" to refer to the "flashbacks". So as to give more space for people to post new content (or to leave new content up a little longer). I still think it's a better idea to use the flashbacks as filler for slower periods.

    But doing the entire page once a month makes no sense. Just leave things as the are, okay? And tomorrow's a school day, so what's with all the drinking and smoking?

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  18. Should I cry,
    should I laugh?
    Won't everyone break
    their meds in half!

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  19. I think once a month is good, too, with cutting out the old posts, the videos, the "thirstys," and the Chronicle articles you post.

    Just make it original material that the writers put up, but they should be edited for consistency and run more like a journal.

    I have a lot of editorial experience at a university press, and would be willing to offer some guidance if you wanted to start up a more formal sort of approach.

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    1. I, for one, do not want the page to be more formal and academically rigorous like a formal journal. I like it being small and wacky and crazy with oddballs commenting and posting. I like the variety and the fact that on any given day, I might encounter a vidshizzle or a haiku or even a rant within a Thirsty... or even a duck or two... I think that allows for creativity and helps us to see the ridiculous nature of the formal academic structures that we mock and try to veer away from.

      A page where only the "best articles" have been "allowed" on the page once a month just because some people can't keep up makes me want to weep!

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  20. I don't like how Cynic has played the "regulars" crowd by telling us our opinion on changing to once a month posting is not worth what her opinion is.

    She's the only one who is against the change.

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    1. And I don't like your proposal that we change the blog.

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    2. This comment has been removed by the author.

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    3. I don't think I'm alone in my dissent. I am totally confused by the fact that people who called for more inclusiveness of "others" now want to make it even more exclusive. That's all. I'm all for more inclusiveness. I loved having more people post on "others" day and wish we didn't have to HAVE an "others" day and that people would just up and post whenever they felt like it. I don't see how that's going to be achieved by limiting posts to only certain people once a month.

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    4. No, she isn't the only one. I completely agree with leaving the page exactly as it is, no change , no formal structure, no "once a month" nonsense. I'd just say cut down slightly on "flashbacks", that's all. But I don't feel strongly about that, either.

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    5. Here's another regular not liking the proposal to change the blog. Besides liking the often raw, immediate nature of new posts, I enjoy that flashbacks usually show us that things haven't changed much over the last few years. And sometimes the new comments to flashbacks are interesting in themselves.

      As for the weekend slowdowns, meh. Usually weekends are the only time I catch up on CM.

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  21. I am so over this CONSTANT navel-gazing and glad-handing to people who do NOTHING to contribute to this blog EXCEPT send their private bitching to the mods (and somehow manage to dominate their thinking).

    Go monthly and watch the precious numbers dwindle. Finally kill the blog.

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  22. I feel like I must be misunderstanding something here, but it seems like some people are requesting one post per month? Is that correct?

    I love that there are usually 2-3 posts on here each day. When one or two of them is interesting to me, I love checking back in later and seeing the comments. When they're not (no offense, but I'm just not a VidShizzle person), it takes almost no effort to scroll past it to the other stuff.

    The only day I've ever been here and thought that there were too many posts was the "Others Day" (and not because they were from Others, but because there were something like 7 - 10 posts almost at once). For the most part, I'm always wanting there to be more posts.

    I think the flashback posts are great for the weekend or for days when there are 0-1 new posts otherwise. It fills in the gap, especially for those of us who didn't read RYS.

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    1. Not one post a month, but a release of a number of posts in a monthly format. At least that's what some are suggesting, with fewer writers and only the best posts.

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    2. ...which must now be vetted by a team of editors.

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  23. Just like my administrators, if you can't end the blog one way, you want to limit its abilities in other ways, so as to effectively kill it. Very clever!!!

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  24. Can I be on the editorial board? I need more items to place into my professional development reports and this would be perfect!

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  25. Love the blog as is - for me this is a daily visit to see what's new. So maybe some days there isn't anything new. That's fine. It's offbeat, unpredictable (I sure didn't see this discussion coming), charming, profane, raw and real.

    Feedback to mods: Love the page, in spite (because?) of it's imperfections. I know it's hard to ride herd on the crazy some days, but an editorial board? Can you imagine Walter sitting on a CM editorial board? Or submitting to one?

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  26. (I was totally kidding by the way - the very notion of a CM editorial board seems hilarious)

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  27. I suspect when All Is Revealed a lot of these comments come from the same ISP. Y'all stop messing with CC!

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    1. I'm just going to shut up for a while. This is keeping me from grading my midterms :)

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  28. Let me sum up. The RGM suggested limiting flashbacks to once a month, and a bunch of people who never fucking contribute suggested cutting the whole shebang back to between one and ten posts a month, with a fucking editorial board.

    Now, the editorial board thing worked great, back on Rate Your Students, and there were some great posts selected from the things that were sent in. But it was a whole hell of a lot of work for the editors, and there were a lot more posts than 10 a month. I gathered that part of the reason for starting CM was because RYS was too damned much work for the mods; allowing people to do their own posting made less work -- and the quality really didn't suffer much. The quantity was a lot more spotty; there wasn't someone in control of feeding out posts on a regular schedule, so we got, and continue to get, clusters and gaps.

    There are two things that would kill the ethos of this blog: cutting back to four or five writers, and limiting the number of posts. On the other hand, we could still have a good blog if we had a good set of committed mods to run it the way RYS was run.

    Anybody want to volunteer to do it RYS-style? I thought not. And I sure as hell don't trust any of the people who showed up out of the blue to suggest we make ourselves just like every other fucking boring academic blog. Which, incidentally, we regularly mock on this board.

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  29. I like the flashbacks, because some of them are relevant to ongoing issues, some of them are thought-provoking, some of them remind me of problems I've encountered, and they all give a sense of continuity.

    The vidshizzles are fine, too.

    I don't like the idea that we're going to have an editorial board (WTF) to "vet" the posts submitted, and develop some sort of online Monthly Digest of Misery. This isn't getting published in a first-tier journal, FFS - it's a place to informally blow off steam (I thought) and get some advice and support from others who might be experiencing some of the same issues.

    Too many posts? Don't read them all. Don't comment on them all. Post is a flashback? Don't read it, if you don't want to.

    I seriously do not understand the ongoing grief that this page gets from disgruntled readers. It's a free blog on which academics post their thoughts. It is what it is. The constant "you people don't know what you're doing, you should make things better" would drive me around the bend if I were a RGM.

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  30. the Flashbacks are fun. You've done a good job picking them (esp this weekend!)

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