The Revolution Will Not Be Televised…

Will it be blogged?

These are the instructions for your super special, extra, extra last post.  The stakes are high.  Success is worth a third of a letter grade on your final grade.  So, C –>C+; B+ –> A- and so on.

  1. You need to write a post that riffs, reflects, or analyzes the idea that blogging  and social media (also known as the living web, as the read write edit web, as the blogosphere, as cyberspace) are revolutionary.
  2. You will need to find a published argument by someone who makes bold, strong claims about the impact of these technologies and how they are used.
  3. You can agree or disagree.
  4. You can not use the same source publication as someone else.
  5. Published means from a print or digital source.  Digital sources must have a clear author (no wiki) and be demonstrably relevant or well-known.  For example, if it is an essay or long post form a blog, it should be a blog with some authority.  There are ways to ascertain authority.  Learning about them can be part of your learning process.
  6. Hey, a BOOK is a published form also.  (You don’t have to read a whole book, but relevant portions).
  7. You may be creative in the style or format of your post.
  8. You must post this by May 16, noon.  No exceptions.
  9. Posts must be of high quality in terms of style, mechanics, and insights.
  10. I am the final arbiter of earning credit.  No exceptions.

Historical note: “The Revolution Will not be Televised” is a classic hip-hop sung poem by Gil Scott Heron.  Yes!  It is from 1970-71. Watch!

After a long, difficult life, he is back with a new album and tour.

PS: “The revolution will be live..”


T Shirt Design…



Goldman Sachs Round Up

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As I mentioned in class, as the Senate Hearings continue this week is producing a range of opinions.

David Brooks, a conservative columnist for the NewYork Times, sees a typical story of dumb politicians:

First, as is traditional in our culture, the elected leaders of the clueless establishment have summoned the leaders of Goldman Sachs to a hearing so they can have a post-hoc televised conniption fit on the amorality of Wall Street.

Paul Krugman, now considered  a progressive, but I am old enough to remember him being disliked by the left for arguing for free trade back in the 1990s, is reliably more focused on economics in “Looters in Loafers.”

We’ve known for some time that Goldman Sachs and other firms marketed mortgage-backed securities even as they sought to make profits by betting that such securities would plunge in value. This practice, however, while arguably reprehensible, wasn’t illegal. But now the S.E.C. is charging that Goldman created and marketed securities that were deliberately designed to fail, so that an important client could make money off that failure. That’s what I would call looting.

Part of his article relies on the investigative reporting of ProPublica on Magnetar, a hedge fund that modeled much of what Goldman Sachs is accused by the SEC of doing, as presented in this podcast: Inside Job.

For a more comprehensive overview, here is our friend Bethany McLean (here on the Daily show) (of the Smartest Guys in the Room) on the Goldman Sachs story:

That is, there are no good guys here. It’s dishonest and ultimately dangerous to pretend that Goldman is the only bad actor. And the worst actor of all is the one leading the charge against Goldman: our government.

Thanks Phil!

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Best of Further Research Week

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This week’s blog council (Derek, Emily, Mike, and Alex) would like to award you with the GOLD for best post of the week for you post on Beards, Risk-taking, and Wall Street.

The blog council would also like to honor the following people for excellent posts:

Terrific Idea: Jessie for her post on The Housing Market’s Downfall.

Well Written and Researched: Macey with her fantastic post entitled Blame Someone Else? Citigroup’s “Effective” Risk Management

Most Conversational Topic: Brooke and her post on A Theory Disproven. A Few Billion Dollars Misspent. A Country in a Crisis.

Blog Traffic

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Here is some comparative information.

The Nets We Weave (my own research and commentary blog).  Founded 2005.  Hits: 16,000

The Way Things Work: Organizations (OT) Founded 2007.  Hits: 105,000

Bloginization (OT): Founded Sp 2009.  Hits: 32,000

What do we make of these?  Can anyone look  into how good the wordpress statistics are?

Creative Chaos in Many Worlds (Guest Speaker)

Our event is on the edge of chaos sometimes.  — Danger Ranger aka Michael Mikel, as quoted in Enabling Creative Chaos by Katherine Chen

In class on Thursday, we will have  a guest, Dr. Katherine Chen, of City College of New York.  She is a relative newcomer to academia, (like yours truly) and has written a very interesting book, Enabling Creative Chaos, that is a deep analysis of one remarkable organization: the Burning Man festival.

Dr. Chen will speak tomorrow at 4:30 in the Willard Smith library (in Vaughan Lit).  I hope you can come.

In class, she will tell us more about Burning Man and what it has to tell us in general about the sustaining creativity and community in an organization that has pursued ambitious goals and experienced many kinds of adaptation over many years.   I recommend you look over the Burning Ma site, especially material like this essay and all of the fascinating multimedia and images.

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