Monday, December 10, 2007

Edublog awards

The winners of the 2007 "eddies" have been announced. I would have liked to attend the online ceremony in Second Life, but it clashed with what little family time I have these days, so I had to wait to get the news.

I enjoy the fact that the nominations alert me to some blogs I had not previously encountered. I also enjoy the fact that at least one of the blogs I vote for usually comes through. This year one of my nominees won a category, too.

Not everyone likes the idea of adding an element of competition to the whole social media scene, and I respect that. There has got to space in the blogosphere for all shapes, sizes and persuasions. At the time of the conversation, I stated that I had no problem with it.

What I can safely say now that the whole thing is behind us is that I realised that I was speaking as one not in the running.

It's a really odd thing that I love competition... if I can win by my own efforts: sports, board games, quizzes. But I hate being at the mercy of other people's votes. Always have. I take it all far too personally. When I was 11, I was nominated for the position of house captain at my primary school, but I stood down, because the vote was by a show of hands and I couldn't face the possibility of no hands being raised for me.

Later, in my first year at college, I was asked to participate in the annual beauty contest. Quite apart from my instinctive objection to the whole concept of beauty pageants, I was afraid of being humiliated, so I refused.

Talk about your average insecurity!

You would think I had outgrown that by now. But I went through the same agonies when I was nominated for school governor (that time I was persuaded to stand and I was elected). I imagine that I would be the same if my blog were nominated. I am also fairly sure that I wouldn't feel free to write this post, if I were nominated but didn't garner any votes.

By what do we measure the success of a blog?

My dissertation (which I mention often, but have yet to start writing) focuses on how my use of social media has transformed my professional practice. When I read back over some of my early posts, just a little over two years ago, I am amazed at the extent to which many of my views have changed. To me, this is the measure of the impact of my entrance into the blogosphere. However, this is very subjective and qualitative. It would be nice to include an element of quantitative evidence, but I'm at a loss as to how to do that. Having identified my life as my PLE, I have made my learning journey so personal, so subjective that it can't realistically be measured by anyone other than me, and I'm not sure my own measure is an entirely reliable one!

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