Posted by: bklunk | August 24, 2006

Your First POLS 51 Post

Hello POLS 51 Bloggers,

Here is what you should do for your first post. Go to a blog that you have found that relates to your topic. What can you tell about the blog and its author(s) that will help you evaluate the blogs content. Does the blog include some description of the author or authors? What are the educational or professional credentials of the author or authors? Check out the blog’s blogroll, the list of blogs and other sources the blogger claims to read regularly. Does the blogroll indicate an ideological bias? Are most of the sources liberal or conservative? Or to borrow a phrase, is the blogroll “fair and balanced”?

If the blog has advertising, does the advertising show some bias, e.g. are the advertisers the kind that would want to appeal mostly to liberals or conservatives or some other kind of group? Increasingly, advertisers try to find ways to focus their appeals to the most receptive audiences, so the kind of ads on a blog might be revealing.

If you feel comfortable doing so, you could use Technorati to identify other blogs that link to the blog you are examining. Do other blogs treat the blog you are examining as authoritative?

Most important, read some of the posts on the blog. How do they strike you? Are they well written? Do they seem like serious attempts at analyzing international affairs or are they basically snarky attempts to make the author or authors seem superior? Do you feel they are helping you understand your issue?

This post must be made by September 8. Whether you have made this post by September 8 will be one of the criteria I will use to evaluate your blog for your final grade.



  1. I too listed myself on level 5; I enjoy the benefits of safety, education, accessable food and health care and for the last three years, the NFL Sunday ticket on DirecTV (life’s true purpose). However, freedom is the one thing that makes any of it possible. And since everyone in this country is born with the same freedoms I was, I put them on level 5 as well. Because someone is poor does not prevent them from attaining great success in this country. Anyone can join the military as I did and be given a virtually free ride through life if they choose to stay in, or an equally paid for ticket through school if they apply themselves. The freedoms we enjoy (and largely take for granted) in this country do not translate to all parts of the world, nor do some of the basic aspects (such as food and energy) of our lives. Places like Iran do not allow free speech or treat women as equals. Places like Africa do not have food on every corner in every city. And places like India and China do generate enough individual wealth as to allow most citizens to afford electricity. The median person living in our country of 300+ million people is so far above the rest of the world (not including intangables such as level of hapiness and general outlook on life), that it would take several more Earths worth of resources just to provide the goods to bring the everyone else our level. I put the rest of the world on step 2.

  2. So, do we post our comments on the other person’s blog that we have found, or do we post our analysis of the particular blog on our own blog?

  3. Oh boy! No post it on your blog. I have an aggregator that captures all the new posts that students in the course make on their blogs. Trying to follow comments you make on other peoples’ blogs would probably drive me to early retirement.

  4. I’m not a student in your class (I wish my professors did something like this), but I’m a blogger. Just so you know, you can trackback your posts to whatever post you’re writing about, which the original blogger will notice. It could lead them to link to your blog, and/or get people to comment on your site. I’m not sure if that affects your grade or not.

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