September 18, 2009
To blog or not to blog...
Posted by Afra Afsharipour

As a first time blogger I realize that I am entering this debate quite late (see for example here, here and the series of terrific essays from 2006 (Volume 84-5) in the Washington University Law Review) for just a few of the many prior discussions about this issue), but yesterday I came across this interesting post by Brian Leiter on recent stats about the rising number of law professor who are now blogging.  Since entering the academy I have been fairly hesitant and somewhat scared to blog.  Now that I am guest blogging at the Conglomerate, I am glad to have entered the blogosphere at least for a short time.  Nevertheless, it is surprising how many people are blogging regularly and have started new blogs given how much time it takes.  While I certainly read some blogs and appreciate the dissemination of ideas that happens through blogs, I am still looking at the same blogs that I read two to three years ago and even then rarely do I have the time to consistently keep up with them.  Where is everyone getting these extra hours a day to devote to regular reading and writing of substantive blogs?  I do wonder (or worry) whether blogging is now de rigeur (as Brian put it) at many law schools.  For many junior faculty balancing scholarship, teaching, service and a personal life (especially if they have children) is more than a full time job.  What do you think readers, is blogging moving toward becoming required activity for faculty, even if informally?  Will/should tenure standards change to take into account informal blogging requirements (if you could even call it a requirement)? Of course, the answers are obviously tied to local standards at each school.  But I wonder about the extent of the shift in the academy as a whole.  As for me, I really appreciate the people who post blogs sharing their scholarly ideas and the people who have reached out to me this week both about my blog posts and my scholarship.

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