posted by Daniel Solove
Having just compiled the census, I’m running into a difficulty. On several large group blogs, there are professors listed on the sidebar who have barely, if ever, made a post. This is especially true for large institutional blogs. The Georgetown Law Faculty Blog has only about 20 posts in all of 2007, mainly by Rebecca Tushnet and Randy Barnett, both of whom primarily blog elsewhere. However, there are 16 professors listed in the sidebar as authors. the University of Chicago Law School’s Faculty Blog has much more activity, as it is regularly updated, but it has 20 professors on the sidebar with only a fraction posting with any degree of regularity. This makes it difficult to tally the census, because these names on the sidebar — what I will call “deadwood bloggers” — are distorting the statistics in the census. In some sense, it is false advertising — the sidebar space is typically used for regular bloggers, but many blogs leave up names no matter how often a professor posts or no matter if a professor even posts at all.
I’ve asked Sam Yospe, our intern, to compile a list of deadwood bloggers. As a definition, I would list bloggers who haven’t posted in the past two months (since May 31). Is two months a fair threshold? The difficulty with requiring a longer amount of time is that it makes it harder to tally, as under the definition I propose, it requires going through two months of a blog’s postings. The problem with a shorter period of time is that it will eliminate a few professors who blog on very infrequent intervals — the occasional bloggers. So I think that two months is a fair time period. What do readers think? If anyone can send me names of professors on the census who haven’t blogged in the past two months, that would be very helpful. When the final version of the census comes out, they’ll be purged from the rolls. Unlike law faculties, there is no tenure in the blogosphere . . . or at least, not in my census.