Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Party blogs

All politics is local … especially in Massachusetts.

In a World Wide Web of endless blogs, there are even more endless blogs that focus on the political on goings, blunderings, and whatever else happens in this state’s politics.

And just because Massachusetts is a state considered to be one of the darkest shades of blue doesn’t mean there aren’t any republican blogs to be found. There are a number and – like the liberal blogs – they love writing long posts about their positions.

The two local political blogs that are most often quoted in area publications are Blue Mass Group and Hub Politics.

Blue Mass Group is the state’s most popular liberal blog that really made a name for itself – especially in the media – right before the 2006 race of governor.

Posts vary widely in topics, but always have some sort of political tie to them. They’re usually longer posts, but well informed and written – as long as you know it comes with a liberal twist.

However, the blog is somewhat overwhelming when you first visit it. They link as much as they can in their posts, but the appearance creates an unappealing mess.

Hub Politics is a little cleaner. Its posts are – ironically – to the left or the screen and appear a lot neater. Its posts are shorter but come with the conservative angle missing in Blue Mass Group.

While both blogs have posts that stick it to the opposite party, Hub Politics seems to really stick it to the Democrats – especially Gov. Deval Patrick.

Both blogs are good sources of information, particularly about the inner workings of this state’s politics. Just use caution and remember which blog supports what when digesting their posts.

Back to school (and the blogs)

It seems as though every school district in the state now has its own Web site. As they should. A school district that has a Web site shows that it is at least trying to keep up with the new tools being used daily by their students.

However, some of the bigger and more enthusiastic schools or districts now boast about having their own blog.

The topics and content vary widely from school to school – as does the usefulness and the frequency of posts. We’ll examine a couple of local school blogs here.

Take the Scituate school system’s blog. Titled CSI Scituate (CSI standing for Central Source for Information), "posts information of importance such as: School Committee Meeting highlights, reference to Mariner articles, selectman or advisory meeting commentary, etc.," according to the blog's description.However, it appears the authors don't know exactly what they're doing just yet. Yes, we're all still learning, especially this author, but the men or women behind the scenes of CSI Scituate have posts from late last year where only the headline appears and no working body text.

Also, the content seems more geared to informing parents rather than the students, which isn’t all that bad, but posts on topics that would attract and inform the students wouldn’t hurt either. What definitely wouldn’t hurt is if the blogger actually posted. The last post on the blog – May 7.
Maybe the school system lost its blogger because of a failed override or maybe they just gave up. Either way, it’s a shame.

On the other hand, students a couple of miles to the North can read regular posts on their school system’s blog.

The Boston Public School Department launched its own blog last year and it has come a long way.

Yes, some of the pictures in recent posts aren’t loading and the posts read like marshmallow fluff press releases (maybe that’s because they let the chief communications officer do all the blogging), but you still have to give the school system credit.

The posts are regular and the content is informative for both parents and students. Some of the posts even feature students completing interesting projects and research. With 57,000 students or so, the BPS is making good use of its blog.

Not bad for the nation’s oldest public school system.

Friday, September 14, 2007


Thanks for visiting Blogging Blogs. This blog will examine various local blogs from around the state and attempt to analyze what makes them popular (if they are), not popular, informative, or misinformed. The goal of this blog is to bring to light and highlight the differences between blogs of similar topics and show how these blogs help or impair the average blog reader. Hopefully you’ll be a frequent visitor as we hope to start consistently posting very soon.