Searching for Voices

7/30/2013 12:00:00 AM

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With the demise of Google Reader it seems I’ve been in a bit of a funk when it comes to my regular reading. You see I’ve been using RSS for almost 10 years and it was truly a transformative technology for me, opening up my eyes to passionate learners around the world that formed the basis of my thoughts around educational over this past decade. They’ve become my teacher and in some cases my friends. While twitter has replaced for many the regular routine of reading blogs and writing them, I’ve been pretty firm in knowing that for me, getting to know someone over time by reading their blog is much different and I believe more powerful than a random sampling via twitter.

So in my search for a new reader, I decided to ditch my feeds and start fresh. That said, there are a few folks that get added back quickly because they continue to punch out awesomeoness. There were sadly a few subscriptions that haven’t seen a new post for years and some of these people had wonderful stuff to share. Back in 2004 I would pretty much subscribe to anyone educator who blogged. I want to be a bit more selective this time around. Many of my favorite bloggers are ones I’ve found via twitter and got to know better there. You see there’s something to be said about the context and social aspects. When George Couros writes I hear his actual voice and because of our relationship I feel free to challenge him occasionally and he feels the same about me. That’s the difference in some ways between books and blogs. I don’t naturally expect to have a conversation with an author and quite frankly don’t always need to but because of the nature of blogs, they are by nature, conversations. I find it more difficult to have a conversation with a stranger and thus am reluctant to comment on a blog I don’t subscribe to. That’s not to say I never but I definitely feel like most of us provide a context over time and a single post doesn’t offer that.

I wish more people would blog since I get a sense of how smart they are on twitter but 140 characters is a snack, not a actual meal. I know there are lots of very valid reasons why people don’t blog and I’m not trying to guilt anyone into it because you have to want to take the time to share more deeply but I’m just saying I wish more people would.

Photo by Lyn Hilt

That said, I’m looking for  people that are really helping you learn or sharing wonderful stuff. This is your chance to help me fill up my reader with more smart people. I actually led a session on this at Connected ED and here are some blogs to look at. So leave a link and a comment about someone else you think is worth reading and how long you’ve been reading their work. Don’t leave your own blog, you can add that when you fill out the comment, toot someone’s horn this time. I’m looking for someone you’ve committed to reading over time. Also an RT of this post would be helpful too.

Photo Credit: Irish Typepad via Compfight cc

PS. On the Reader front, I’ve tried a bunch and am going to stick with Feedly.

cross-posted at http://ideasandthoughts.org/

Dean Shareski is a Digital Learning Consultant with the Prairie South School Division in Moose Jaw, SK, Canada, specializin in the use of technology in the classroom. He lectures for the University of Regina and is the Community Manager of the Canadian DEN or Discovery Educators Network.


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