University of Colorado Law School Professor Paul Campos had a piece in our local paper yesterday morning in which he thought out loud about starting a blog. Confessing that he is “attracted to the prospect of being the last law professor in America without one,” he gives a tongue-in-cheek pro vs. con analysis about starting one.
Among writers in general, and bloggers in particular, alcohol and narcissism go together like peanut butter and chocolate. Psychologists define narcissistic personality disorder as involving a grandiose sense of self-importance, and an overwhelming need for the constant attention and admiration.
What better example of this can there be than bloggers obsessed with how many “hits” their posts are eliciting, or how often they’re mentioned on the Internet, and who take pride in drawing attention to themselves by being aggressively obnoxious?
Geez, I hope he’s not talking about me. I do check my bog traffic regularly, especially since I’ve been at this for less than two months. But narcissistic?
Blogs pose special dangers for academics. The whole point of academic life is to offer those who live it the time to spend months and years becoming expert about, and reflecting upon, complex issues, before committing thoughts on such matters to print.
The same can’t be said for the chardonnay-fueled rant posted at 3 in the morning, which may inadvertently tell your readers far more than they wish to know about your living-room decor, your psycho-sexual neuroses and your views on “American Idol.”
I promise you’ll never read about these things on this blog. I do occasionally post at 3 in the morning. But after a Bud Light, not chardonnay.
But he does mention by name some blogging academics he respects. And if he is indeed the last law professor in America without a blog, my “Blogs by Law Profs” blogroll is way too short.
Well, that’s it for this post. It’s 3 a.m. and I’ve still got to check how many “hits” my blog got today.
UPDATE (6/28/07): There are several law professor blogs consolidated at Law Professor Blogs. I’ll try to add them to my blogroll over the weekend.