Why should I use a weblog?

  • Chronologically ordered information
    The posts in a weblog are ordered chronologically. The newest post is always displayed at the top. which makes weblogs particularly suitable to document developing processes (projects, team work).
  • Timeliness of information
    Generally, weblogs are updated on a regular basis. They are therefore particularly suitable for issues which are currently in the air and which are discussed rather controversially.
  • Awareness of subjectivity
    Weblogs create a sensibility for the fact that information is socially constructed and that not all sources are equally trustworthy. Moreover, a weblog is the place to publish controversial opinion, which can enrich the usual teaching materials.
  • Crosslinking information on the internet
    Quoting and linking to other sources of information is a part of the specific weblog writing culture. Information related to a subject is not only collected, but normally also commented. In this way, weblogs promote a creative, but correct handling of foreign sources.

Blog or wiki?

  • In a wiki, information is thematically ordered. Everything that belongs together is also found in the same place. In a weblog however, information is ordered chronologically. In addition, every post can be assigned to different thematic categories.
  • In a wiki, old and new information are continuosly merged and redundant parts can be deleted. In a weblog, however, all posts are normally kept the way they are, nothing is deleted. The time stamp indicates whether the information is still up-to-date.
  • Edit privileges in a wiki are administrated via a group password (i.e. one password for a whole group of students). In a weblog, every student has to be registered to obtain his or her individual writing privilege.

Blog or discussion board?

  • In a discussion board, the discussion is conducted by more or less equal participants: A post is followed by replies which are themselves new posts. In a weblog however there is a difference between posts (visible at first sight) and comments (visible only when clicked on). This makes the discussion somewhat asymmetrical: Posts and their authors are given more weight than comments and their authors. Therefore, a weblog is the application of choice if mainly comments to a given text/image/hypothesis shall be posted, but not if a common development or modification of the text/hypothesis is wished for.
  • Comments in a weblog are always posted in chronological order. In a discussion board however, replies can be placed directly under any post they thematically refer to.
  • In some discussion boards (i.e. most ELBA-boards) writing of posts and replies is possible without logging in. In weblogs, this is only possible for comments.

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