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    Forthcoming paper: Blogs as Research and Teaching Resources...
    blog entry posted March 18, 2016 by Roger S Debreceny, last edited March 18, 2016, tagged research, teaching 
    466 Views, 2 Comments
    Forthcoming paper: Blogs as Research and Teaching Resources for Accounting Academics
    intro text:

    A forthcoming paper in JIS from Dr Glen Gray, California State University at Northridge, is entitled  Blogs as Research and Teaching Resources for Accounting Academics. So this is a blog about blogs!

    Glen Gray

    Dr Glen Gray


    If William Shakespeare was writing about blogs today, he would say something like "What’s in a name? A blog by any other name would still be just as sweet." Blogs are definitely a sweet source of timely information on a wide variety of topics for accounting- and AIS-related research and teaching. However, there is no absolute definition of blogs that can be used to determine whether a website is a blog or not. Blog is a label that a web master can give to his/her website or not. As working definition, a blog is a website where an individual (a blogger) or a group of individuals post observations and opinions regarding a specific topic and usually where readers can post comments. There is probably thousands of useful website that meet this definition but are not called blogs by the webmasters. Under this broad definition of blogs, social media (Facebook, Twitter, etc.) are blogs.

    Potentially useful blogs (and blog equivalents) are maintained by academics (inside and outside of the accounting domain), practitioners, large and small accounting firms, and accounting and technology vendors. The primary value of blogs is their immediacy because bloggers are very quick to post blogs regarding any events (new regulations, new lawsuits, new technologies, etc.) in the subject matter they are following. Bloggers archive their previous posts; accordingly, besides being very timely, blogs can also provide a rich history of specific subject matters. However, quoting the movie, How the Grinch Stole Christmas, “One man’s compost is another man’s potpourri.”  Blogs are not vetted or subject to independent review, consequently it’s caveat emptor when venturing into the blogosphere to collect information.  

    With that caution stated, different bloggers’ opinions—biased or not—on a specific topic or subject matter can be a valuable starting point or input for more rigorous research. These opinions can be transformed into testable hypothesis and subsequently accepted or rejected.

    These different bloggers’ opinions can also be a valuable teaching resource. Students can be assigned to locate several blogs on a specific topic, summarize differences found, and develop conclusions based on their review of the blogs and a rational for reaching those conclusions.

    The challenge is that locating applicable blogs is a messy and arbitrary process. Search of BlogSearchEngine.org (a Google app) on the term “accounting” returns 32 million results! Fortunately, the top listed accounting blogs are frequently lists of blogs (e.g. 50 Accounting Blogs You Should Follow at blog.directcapital.com).  In addition to traditional web searches (e.g., google.com), there are specialized blog directories that provide another method to locate blogs. One place to start is 23 Blog Directories to Submit Your Blog To (www.searchenginejournal.com/20-essential-blog-directories-to-submit-your-blog-to).

    To completely realize the value of blogs, you should also search for websites that have all the characteristics of blogs, but are not labeled blogs. For example, in addition to specifically labeled blogs, both large and small accounting firms publish newsletters, alerts, and perspectives that have all of the characteristics blogs. These blog-equivalents cover a wide variety of topics and be included in any search for blogs for research or teaching.



    • Robert E Jensen

      Faculty Focus: The Teaching Professor Blog --- http://www.facultyfocus.com/topic/articles/teaching-professor-blog/

      Bob Jensen's threads on listservs, blogs, and the social media ---

    • Robert E Jensen

      The Guardian:  Why are so many YouTubers finding themselves stressed, lonely and exhausted? ---

      Jensen Comment
      I hesitate to say that this is also a problem for bloggers, but most of the faculty bloggers in accountancy dropped out or greatly slowed down, including some of my favorites like The Grumpy Old Accountants, Accounting Education News, Accountinator, Accounting Cycle, Building Business Value, FraudBytes (nothing for nine months), MyEMBA, Pondering the Classroom, RandomThoughts (nothing in nine months), Really Engaging Accounting, Stephen Lynn's Blog, Stategic Management Accounting, Teaching Managerial Accounting, The Professor's Perspective, The Summa, The TaxDoc Spot, The Trite's E-Business Blog (Jerry still has a Zorba blog), The Accounting Coach, The XBRL Canada Blog, Thinking Outside the Box, Tic Marks, Análise de Balanço, Globaliconta, Ideias Contábeis, and Professor Lopes de Sá. The Accounting Onion is temporarily out of action, but it will probably return when Tom has fewer irons in the fire.

      I suspect virtually every other academic discipline had short-lived blogs by faculty who burned out of blogging or ceased blogging for whatever reasons.

      The AECM Listserv is a unique forum where accounting educators (and others) enter into debates as well as add news items. Many of the most active contributors, however, have dropped out such that there are many lurkers and only a few actives. I miss some of the former actives who liked to needle me and egg me on. I also miss some genuine experts who broadened my understanding of the world (like David Fordham) and some who were outrageous (like David Albrecht).

      What is really disappointing to me is that I can't think of an accounting educator from a prestigious university who blogs. Accountics scientists rarely stick their heads out of the ground. If I'm missing somebody here please let me know! They sometimes contribute working papers to SSRN, but the SSRN has a wall preventing interactive exchanges with authors. It's like they don't want to be bothered by readers.

      I really, really miss the Grumpy Old Accountants because they adopted the Abe Briloff (Barrons) style of criticizing published financial statements. I also miss Accounting Education News that kept me up to date on happenings on the other side of the pond.