Thursday, September 8, 2011

The conversation goes online

As I told you last week on the introductory lecture, the biggest commitment during this course's start-up phase is turning up to listen to all our great guest lecturers. It's great that so many of you come to the lectures, but by all means, please also come in time! The number of students increased by pretty much 50% (from 33 to 48) in the first 7 minutes of today's lecture. Charlie and Ori gave you an extra hour by starting 09.00 instead of 8.15 - the least can do to reciprocate is to be there in time. Please make it so the next time!

Beyond the lectures, there are some other things happening during the start-up phase of the course (and that are part of the examination of the course). One is writing the essay you just handed in, and another part is preparing for, and showing up at the seminars (starting tomorrow with seminar 1 - see the instructions here).

Charlie and Ori talked about inspiration and creativity and about generating and holding on to good ideas during a design process. We'll partly use the four seminars for these purposes, but, four seminars is not a lot and the sheer number of students taking this course is very large; the conditions for everyone contributing to, and for everyone to be heard in our seminar conversations around radio/the future of radio are not that great. So, we'll expand the conversation by also taking it online.

As I also told you at the introductory lecture, one of the important things during the start-up phase is for us to work together towards creating a set of common understandings about the theme - radio - and about important (future) trends in radio. Charlie and Ori, being architects, sketch. We, being media students, blog. As you know, this is the course blog, but there is also a "companion blog". Most of you have been invited to become contributors there (i.e. you can create blog posts there). Half of you have accepted that invitation and half are still pending. I will send out a new invitation/reminder and this time you should accept it, because each student has to contribute to the "class conversation online" at least two times during the start-up phase. This will make the companion blog a rather lively online space, at least during the duration of the start-up phase. What can you contribute with, and what are the requirements?

You can typically contribute with:
- A blog post with some information or tips about (the future of) radio, for example events happening in Stockholm or elsewhere, or newspaper/magazine articles about radio, or radio programs about radio etc.
- A blog post with a summary, analysis, critique or just thoughts that were initiated by a guest lecture in the course
- A blog post with a summary, analysis, critique or just thoughts that were initiated by course literature (for example the ads or the text for tomorrow's seminar, Nina Wormb's article or Adam Davidson's Planet Money podcasts)
- A comment on someone else's blog post

We will not specify how long your contribution should be in terms of number or words etc. The important criteria is that your contribution should add value. "I agree", "me too" or "the lecture was great" does not add value. The instructions for seminar 1 says "prepare for the seminar by [...] writing down the one thing in your analysis that you think is most interesting and insightful. Please write around 100 words". A great contribution to the companion blog could for example start with your analysis/insight, and develop it beyond your 100 words in the form of blog post.

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