Five Blog Meme

March 21, 2007

Rachel Gordon Singer has started a new meme in the biblioblogosphere. She lists five non-library blogs that she reads, and she has “tagged” anyone who reads her posting to list five non-library blogs of their own.

Rather than following Singer’s instructions to the letter, I’ll just discuss the non-library links under my list of favorites. I know that one should work within the rules, but I’m not sure that I could meet the criteria exactly. Some influence my own writings, which may or may not relate to librarianship.

General news outlets:

Through a number of news sites, such as BBC, CNN, and Guardian Unlimited, I can find stories related to technology and education. (As for Fox, I steer clear of that due to its busy quasi-tabloid style… among other things.) Probably not bleeding edge stuff, but good enough for thinking of developments that might occur sooner rather than later.

Education news

As an academic librarian, I need to keep up with developments in higher education. The Chronicle is an old stand-by.

Technology news

Wired seems essential, even for those who might not think that they would like it. Although it has a blatant “techie” vibe, it has a nice variety of technology-related stories that could appeal to a broader audience. It also has more “bleeding edge” stories in language that reasonably technology-literate people can read. As an added bonus, not all stories have a “rah-rah” attitude towards the latest gadgets. In fact, it even has an occasional loyal opposition column by Tony Long called The Luddite. If you think that crotchety librarian approaching retirement doesn’t “get it” (whatever that means) about technology, you need to read this guy’s stuff. On the other hand, Long does make some good points about the excesses of technology.

New stories only appear quarterly, but The New Atlantis provides some interesting alternative perspectives on the interaction between humans and technology. Although I have issues with its somewhat obvious political bias, I do agree with its critical look at how we need to consider the ethical and political ramifications of new technological developments.

Idiosyncratic news and opinion

I’m not sure if that’s the right term, but some sites contain interesting and opinionated pieces on a variety of topics. Slate has a potpourri of stories by its own writers, while Arts and Letters Daily highlights three stories per day from many sources. Although the latter does not have a “personality” who culls diverse stories, it reminds me of the way that Terry Gross brings in people to discuss a multitude of topics. More or less echoing Gross’ own interviewing talent, a story that one normally would not read gets highlighted in AL&D, and it might turn out to be interesting.


Since this posting focuses on non-library sources, I have also decided to leave out resources related to information science. Nevertheless, I think it would be safe to include Siva Vaidhyanathan’s blog Sivacracy. Although he discusses libraries occasionally, Vaidhyanathan focuses more on the study of culture and communication. Of course, with the far-reaching implications of rapid changes in technology and the need for libraries to determine how they should respond, Vaidhyanathan’s insights are worth reading. However, keep in mind that several contributors post on a variety of subjects, and that only about half of the postings come from Vaidhyanathan himself. Expect an unapologetically left-leaning political stance, too.

Outside the orbit of libraries, information, etc., I do not really look at blogs on other topics. Personal blogs remain totally out of my scope. Nevertheless, I do enjoy reading New Yorker music critic Alex Ross’ The Rest is Noise. I first heard of him while looking for stories related to one of my favorite composers. I like Ross’ writing style, and he treats readers to a variety of stories related to music, as well as his other interests.

Well, it appears that I have five categories of non-library sources, rather than five specific blogs. Nevertheless, many of these types of sources make me think of trends and issues that might affect librarianship and information science. Even with its avocational appeal to me, Ross’ blog has the potential to inform my professional opinions.

I now “tag” any librarian, library school student, or library paraprofessional, to list and discuss however many non-library sources of all types they like.


3 Responses to “Five Blog Meme”

  1. Thanks for the mention. But why would someone on the left be described as “unapologetic?” Why would one apologize? Has anyone ever been described as “unapologeticly conservative?” For that matter, has anyone ever actually apologized for being conservative! That would be nice!

    Anyway, this is all in good fun. If it were not, I would certainly apologize.


  2. Jason Says:

    Thanks for your comment. Since I don’t link to conservative blogs, unapologetic or (ahem) otherwise, I felt compelled to tell anyone visiting your blog… just in case they expect something more neutral. Of course, if you ever refer to my blog, you may refer to it as unapologetically neutral… whatever that actually means.

  3. […] has started quite recently in the biblioblogosphere. I will follow suit, but (as in the case of the top five non-library blog meme I will also bend the rules. Meredith Farkas already did so in her posting by listing a lot more […]

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