Final Project, Adult 641


After writing the blog post about about elitism within commenting communities, which I have reposted as part of this project, I began to think that this was a topic I wanted to explore in more detail. While the project did not go in the direction I had originally intended (there is so much more research I could do!), I am quite excited to share all of my work.

Blogs are changing the spaces where people learn online. They operate like the bulletin boards and newsgroups of the past. People share information, ask questions and engage with each other.

Blogs are not just for people to talk endlessly into a black hole. The best ones encourage a conversation between the writers, the readers and each other. By becoming a part of a blogging commenting community, you can extend your Personal Learning Network virtually to one that includes people from all over the world with their own special skills and abilities.

Blogs encourage connectivism, where knowledge is not created by individuals but it is rather something exists in the world. By forming a network with others, people learn critical thinking skills, decision-making and the way nurturing connections helps facilitate learning.

Furthermore, because blogs can incorporate so many kinds of media, readers experience new levels of digital literacy.

I have divided this project into individual pages on topics relating to blog commenting communities. Each one could have been its own project, as there is a plethora of information available. I wanted to cover a broad range of subjects so I did not go as deep into the minutiae of blog commenting.

Please use this homepage as your guide for reading and exploring the rest of this project. Each page has a “Home” link on the bottom in case you cannot find your way back.

Blog descriptions: In case you are unfamiliar with GawkerMedia and AV Club, start here.

Interviews: I talked to some of my favorite local bloggers about their experiences with online communities.

Commenting systems: I discuss some of the most prominent systems sites use to maintain their comments.

Commenting do’s and don’ts: Guidelines and suggestions found all over the web.

Community and connectedness: How does commenting create a sense of community?

Blog commenting elitism: A repost of what started it all.

Gawker Media: A timeline of this powerhouse media company’s relationships with comments.

The dark side of commenting: Internet trolls and Reddit.


All photos are taken directly from the sites and stories except where noted.

All references are linked within the pages of this blog.

Photo on this page by me.


2 thoughts on “Final Project, Adult 641

  1. Hey, Mel-
    Here is what I posted on our MOOC FB Group page-You rock!

    There has been lots of discussion surrounding Blogs-how to do them, what to do if you are not really a blogger and what should be written. One of the members of my graduate program chose to study blogging and the culture that surrounds it as a course project. She write several blogs and has made numerous friends through her blogs. She was probably the most experienced blogger in our class. I was totally green in August!

    One important observation that she has made is that people generally begin as commenters and then become bloggers. She has given me permission to share her project with you. I hope that you will look at it and comment where applicable. Please let her know that you are a part of the MOOC when providing a comment. She signed up for this course several days ago, which is very exciting for me! There may also be another member of my grad community who will sign-up as well. She is finishing her first MOOC through the University of Pennsylvania. Eric Clark, please let me know how we can invite her to our group. (LOTS of good stuff here, guys!)

  2. Pingback: Adult 641, Final Class Reflections « Melissa A. Koch

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