What if professors could lecture 24-7? Blog culture invades academia.

Blogs constitute a burgeoning field of study too; there are academic conferences on blogging, along with grad students writing papers and even dissertations on the subject—like Cameron Marlow, founder of blog-monitoring service, who is at the M.I.T. Media Lab, where he is finishing his doctorate on blogging, and danah boyd of UC Berkeley (, who is studying the hows and whys of online social networks.

For some, blogging fills a gap. "I have always tried to write in a public language for a general readership," says NYU's Rosen, "and I had been fascinated by the writing on the Web as far back as '95 and '96. I didn't realize it at the time, of course, but what I really wanted was a weblog."

Josh Kortbein, a philosophy Ph.D. candidate at the University of Minnesota, started his blog) Internet light-years ago—in 1999. To paraphrase Brian Eno on the Velvet Underground, not everyone read Josh's blog, but everyone who did started one. "I write my blog because I wish that things were different, and I'm thinking about how to make them that way."

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