I am avoiding commenting on the recent paper “Science blogs and public engagement with science: practices, challenges, and opportunities” by Inna Kouper (here). Bora has made extensive comments on the paper that I recommend (here) and as usual, Bora has done an excellent job linking to all the other stuff on the blogosphere about it.
The reason I avoided commenting on the paper is that I didn’t like it a whole lot, but did not want to get into a huge blog fight about it. I have mixed feelings about the communications field as it is, and I’m not sure sometimes if what I’m looking at is intellectually or academically unsatisfying or if I’m just not tuning in correctly to the material.
Anyway, the paper has been discussed widely enough that I thought you should know about it. The link above will get you to the original. My main two reactions to the paper are: 1) The sampling (which blogs are looked at) is not what I would have done; and 2) I find it fascinating that a communications paper about the blogosphere would not site the relevant blogging about the topic, and stick entirely to academic journal articles.
I’ve lost track of who, but someone out there suggested that this paper would be more valuable as a commentary than as a peer reviewed paper. Maybe. But if you read Bora’s post on it, you’ll see that the problem here was not the peer review process or the peer review context, but rather, the apparent failure of the journal editor(s) to apply the reviews that were carried out.
On an unrelated note, check out this one at Almost Diamonds, where Stephanie Zvan looks at genre.