This week’s pick’n’mix: thoughts on academic competition further up the food-chain, tumblrs

Well, I wrote this when the actual news was topical, but the underlying reasons will probably always be in season, so!…

Live-blog of the University of Leicester press conference of their unearthing of Dick the Third (said affectionately).

Around the 11.10am mark there is a print-screen of a twitter-conversation between Mary Beard and some other followers of the news-story. Prof Beard says that she does not understand how this is important or contributes to scholarship. Personally, I thought that the whole event contributed a rise in profile as well as a certain amount of trust in the fields of history, archaeology, and forensics. Academic pursuits aside, it was a good piece of research communication, which is often valued by scholars of all levels of seniority these days. Anyhoo, each to their own…

…or is it the aforementioned sour grapes talking?

On another note, Financial Times now has a tumblr! It has been interesting to see different media organisations taking up the what-I-call tumblr challenge of using the platform to their own means, as opposed to the now-stereotypical “fangirls, cats, and sarcy comments”-blogs (which I unashamedly love). FT’s tumblr does, as one might expect, feature quite a hefty dose of self-propaganda, but the odd historical (“vintage”) clippings are charming, and could be useful for those who want to read just-a-little-bit, without paying for archival access.

Speaking of tumblrs, here are two blogs that will sympathise with your research-based traumas, trials, and tribulations, and another “special” one for us TAs.

I will finish on a question: I am about to embark on a serious piece of fieldwork for the first time ever – i.e. it involves an ethics form – which I was going to document: might people be interested in that?

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