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Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Temptation of lifeblogging

I often wonder if anyone is reading these posts except for a few friends (and perhaps my curious students), and that was answered in part when I received an email from Scott Carlson who (in response to an earlier post of mine) provided a link to a featured article on lifeblogging he authored for The Chronicle of Higher Education.

The more I read about lifeblogging, the more I become intrigued -- and I have the feeling I might give it a try in some limited form if the opportunity presented itself. But there would be barriers -- similar to those I face whenever I give some thought to getting a motorcycle. (I think I would love the experience, but anytime I mention it aloud my spouse gives me one of those "not in my lifetime" looks -- and thus provides me the minimal excuse I need to get passed that little urge for adventure. But who knows -- perhaps someday I will take the leap onto that cycle or into lifeblogging....)

The Carlson piece seems to touch all the bases -- positives and negatives -- to lifeblogging. But the most telling part of the article is his decision to keep the files he accumulated during his experiment despite the potential for embarrassment and exposure. When I told a colleague about the article, he related the story of a neighbor who had installed video camera throughout his home in order to monitor the activities of his kids while they were under the care of a nanny. Initially it was a security measure, but when it came to erasing the stored files they realized what they had -- a record of their kids growing up and doing things that as empty nesters they might want to recapture years later.

Ain't human nature interesting....


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