Monday, July 8, 2013

blogging through the doldrums

…The NFM blog is having a mid-life crisis. As remedy, I'm thinking swerve ~ a change of direction heading for territory less frequented by social media ~ but keep the furniture (tabbed pages, widgets, feeds), change carpets, curtains and put down a fresh coat of paint. Please share your thoughts…

Why now? Today is reflection day, not just here but across various networks. That is what I told myself this morning and look how far along I am not. Instead of the ubiquitous and easily ignored to-do list, consider a didn't-do list. I am. It seems more realistic. At the end of May, I bemoaned a four post month and promised to do better in June. Instead, I matched with another four. April was a five post month. Blogs do have mid-life crises. Some succumb to them. This one has been going since 2009, cultivated readers, added pages, news stream, video bar, feeds, widgets and such, but, like so many blogs, been eclipsed by social media...hence crisis and now reflection.

By contrast to (and excuse for current post paucity, there are already nine July posts on New Faculty Majority News, aka NewFac News on Tumblr and 28 posts for June. To some extent, News duplicates sharing links to Facebook. Adjunct Stories, has fewer posts but the potential for being even more popular. Both syndicate to our Facebook page, which posts updates, shares and syndicated feeds alike to Twitter. Facebook and Twitter, are our most active social media as well as the most effective and efficient ways to disseminate information and maintain a digital presence. Recently, we opened an outpost or Community on G+, as yet still sparsely inhabited. A page might have been a better choice and still a possibility. Just not yet, please. The extended list includes a Pinboard, YouTube and Vimeo playlists and Storifys. Did I mention the Dailies? Set the algorithm parameters and they run on autopilot.

Then there are the unaffiliated but associated with NFM. A is for Adjunct gets overlooked, and there are two more adjunct blogs, also unaffiliated and hopefully less associated. Mostly, I reblog on them and started both to become more familiar with other blogging platforms. Any page, blog or social media about contingent faculty or related issues under my name (one was not but the platform died) is likely to be associated with the New Faculty Majority, which stifles me and could embarrass the organization. All together, affiliated or just informally associated, they make rather a network. No wonder the main blog comes up short. It's not an only child ~ telling that the word Facebook is writ so large in the blog based Wordle.

Yet, there is more to the slowdown than that.

Does the blog need a career change (a standard mid-life crisis move), a makeover (design), a swerve (direction), all or some combination of the above? In a way, moving news and stories out was a step in that direction but have yet to come up with a replacement. Posting official announcements and NFM updates on behalf of the board is obvious but still not enough without a reliable information stream.

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