Blogs, Stats, Twitter, and Higher Education

Use Twitter as the tip of the iceberg for linking communities with blog content in higher education

If you were ever wondering if Twitter was the tip of the iceberg for connecting short bursts of 140 characters to longer form blog content, look no further. A quick check of web stats for this blog shows an amazing number of college and university IP addresses for visitors who have visited after clicking on links from tweets. These schools are from today…not too bad:

Valparaiso University, SUNY Institute of Technology, Michigan State University, University of Texas at San Antonio, Oregon State University, Miami University, The College of New Jersey, Hofstra University, University of Texas at Austin, Albion College, William Paterson University, University of Washington, Arizona State University, University of York, Claremont University, Simon Fraser University, St. Louis University, Loyola University Chicago, Grand Canyon University, Colleges of the Fenway, North Carolina Central University, University of Wisconsin Madison, San Jose State University, Lincoln University, Texas A&M University, University of Central Florida, North Carolina State University, College of the Holy Cross, University of Cincinnati, Loyola Marymount University, Nova University, Central Methodist University, Merrimack College, Georgia Southwestern State University, Carnegie Mellon University, and the University of Iowa.

Once again, blogs are super useful for content/sharing and Twitter is great for engagement/sharing. I’m frequently sharing all sorts of content on Twitter. Curating useful links and stories via 140 character tweets and leading folks to content that they might not find while surfing.

Original image courtesy of Pexels.

Where is Eric?

Eric Stoller and my watch

Wow. The last post on my blog was in July. JULY! How did this happen? Well, it turns out that being a speaker/writer/consultant is a full-time job (x) 1000. According to my TripIt.com account, in 2012 I took 44 trips and was on the road for 148 days. Coming up, I plan on putting together a post that lists all of the trips/cities from last year. I’ve never traveled so much in my entire life. Whenever anyone asks me if enjoy traveling, I usually respond with “sometimes” or “it depends.” My enjoyment of travel tends to be modulated by my fellow travelers. It’s always more fun when people on flights are happy. Trust me.

One of my foci for 2013 is to be more mindful of my time when it comes to blogging. Writing is something that I did a lot of last year, but it wasn’t always on my terms. As much as I love writing my Student Affairs and Technology blog for Inside Higher Ed, sometimes, it’s tough to generate content when you’re always on the go. Additionally, I realize that many of you are coming over to this blog because of something that I shared on Twitter or because of a Google search for a variety of topics. And, when you get to the blog, you’re probably wondering, “hey, where’s the new stuff?!” Well, here’s the deal, I’m going to make a more concerted effort to post, ponder, write, question, and get my thoughts on “the page.”

Now, I realize that saying and doing are two different things. To that end, I think I’ll reduce my consumption of television programs, minimize my time on Facebook (we’ll see how that goes!), and be mindful of how writing for the love of writing energizes me. There’s always time for writing and thinking.

Social Media and the SSAO

Social Media and the Senior Student Affairs Officer (SSAO)
Educate, Engage, and Energize Students

With the rapid growth of social media and accompanying surge in online activity, particularly among university and college students, student affairs staff are using the latest technologies to engage students and forge stronger ties to programs, services, and events. Increasingly, senior student affairs officers (SSAOs) are building their own communities and initiating important conversations through a variety of social media sites. This article provides an overview of social media and how it can help student affairs make and keep vital connections. Continue reading Social Media and the SSAO

Welcome to my “living room”

My blog is my living room.

I like to think of my blog as my virtual living room. It’s where I sit and ponder and engage with folks on a myriad of issues. Sometimes my posts on social justice issues have resulted in horrid comments being submitted to my site. I moderate all comments from first time commenters so that epithets, hate speech, aggressive hyperbole, and spam does not get to a published state. Recently while I was on vacation, an anonymous commenter left a number of comments on a few of my posts. I decided not to publish their comments because I didn’t want to engage with this person. People who comment without using their real name or email address are almost always visiting my site with mischievous intent. I deleted the comments and continued to enjoy my vacation. Unfortunately, this particular anonymous coward decided that their comments were so important to the world, and to my blog, that they tracked down my work phone number. I received the following email from one of our awesome student workers:

Just to give you a heads up I got a call today from an angry guy who was complaining about his comments being censured from your blog and that it was unethical. I took a message but I just wanted to let you know.

I spoke with the student who had to endure the phone call. I thanked her for being professional and I apologized to her. She should have never had to take that phone call. I was really upset that this had happened. I suppose that due to the nature of my writing that the potential for this has always been a possibility. I was so proud of my student for how she handled herself.

I have never had an official comments policy on my blog. I have never felt that it was necessary until now. Here goes: If you comment on my blog and I decide to delete or spam it, that is my choice. This site is “EricStoller.com.” It’s my virtual living room. I get to decide whether or not you get to hang out on the “couch.”

Photo credit: emdot

Blackbird Pie – embedding individual tweets


Are you a blogger? Do you ever reference tweets in your posts? If yes, then you really need to use this http://bit.ly/b6dERc #BlackbirdPieless than a minute ago via TweetDeck

Have you ever wanted to embed an individual tweet from Twitter into a blog post? A couple of months ago, Twitter released “Blackbird Pie.” It’s a nifty web-based tool that generates embed code for a single Twitter post that you can paste into a blog post.

blackbird-pie-twitter-blogging

Continue reading Blackbird Pie – embedding individual tweets

Blogging Student Affairs and Technology

Inside Higher Ed - blogging about student affairs and technology - Eric Stoller

I am thrilled to announce that I’m going to be blogging about Student Affairs and Technology for Inside Higher Ed (IHE). As an avid reader of IHE, I am very excited to join the IHE blogging team. I think that my posts on student affairs + technology will complement Joshua Kim’s blog on Technology and Learning.

Recently, I held a contest via Twitter to name my new blog. The incentive — a $100 Amazon gift card — courtesy of Inside Higher Ed. Several folks came up with interesting/creative blog names. I think the #SAChat Community provided the majority of ideas. Student Affairs folks are uber creative.

Here are my 3 favorite submissions:

  • Jeff Jackson: The Stoller Strikes Back, Return of the Blogosphere, Student Affairs….I am Your Blogger
  • Zack Ford: Challenge and Tech Support
  • ACUHO-I (sent via DM): Binary Code of Conduct

Choosing a winner from these 3 has been extremely challenging. Star Wars references, Sanford, and an entire Association…how cool is that?!! After more than a week of deliberate (intentional ;-) ) deliberating I have decided that the winner of the gift card is:

eric-stoller-challenge-and-tech-support

Zack Ford’s submission made me laugh. It’s subtle….and I love subtlety. The obvious nod / homage to Nevitt Sanford warms the heart. Challenge and Support is one of my all-time favorite, and oft-used, student development theories.

It should be noted that Julie Larsen was correct…the official name of my new blog is going to be: Student Affairs and Technology. The name needed to be something that would be simple enough that any IHE reader would know exactly what it was about. The blog also needed to be search engine friendly…”Students Affairs + Technology” is simple and searchable.

Stay tuned for my first official post on Inside Higher Ed!

Honorable mention:

Julie P-Kirchmeier: Stoller: Resistance is Futile

Niki Rudolph: Epic Stoller

Justine Carpenter: Tech Tips for SAPs

Christopher Conzen: The Stoller Coaster

Link spammer targets higher education sites

I received the following comment on my blog a couple weeks ago:

“Yeah blogging is really a great way to help people. Great job. I salute you for doing such a great job. ;)”

link spam comment on wordpress blog

The comment felt like it was spam. The post that was commented on was almost a year old and the comment seemed like it was just a way for the commenter to get their link on a blog post on blogging and academic advising.

As most of you know, I am an avid web statistics aficionado. The same day that the spammy comment was submitted (I moderate all new comments) I noticed two inbound referral links from a couple of Google Docs spreadsheets. My concerns that the comment was from a spammer were confirmed. In fact, I had stumbled upon two link spam documents that had been left open for anyone to see. A SEO company known as “Virtual Assistant” (link is to the Better Business Bureau listing…I love the irony!) was waging a concerted link spam campaign and my site had been “selected” for one of their spam comments.

I quickly saved copies of the link spam documents.

Continue reading Link spammer targets higher education sites

Will you vote for my blog?

My blog has been nominated to be included in the BlogHighEd network. This higher ed blogging network is jam packed with a lot of webmasters, marketers, counselors, vendors, and consultants.

It would be wonderful if you could take a couple seconds and vote for my higher education blog posts at:

http://www.bloghighed.org/vote/

My higher education posts can be found at:
http://ericstoller.com/blog/tag/higher-education/

If my site gets enough votes, it will be the only BlogHighEd blog that is authored by an Academic Advisor. Many thanks to all those that have already voted. I really appreciate it.

Cheers!
~Eric

Using Line Rider to teach mathematics

Line Rider math assignment

I am an avid web statistics viewer. Recently, an inbound link to my post on Line Rider Badminton caught my eye.

A teacher at Lisgar Collegiate Institute had linked to my Line Rider blog post on a wikispaces.com site for an advanced function math course. My post is listed as a resource for determining where the Line Rider .sol file is located. What a nifty way of teaching math. Create your own Line Rider track.

Here’s a snapshot of the Line Rider assignment for Mr. Tang’s math class:

Continue reading Using Line Rider to teach mathematics

Silly comment trolls

Comment trolls
I love it when an individual commenter attempts to comment with multiple identities. Silly comment trolls. I can see your IP address. Moderated, first-time comments go into the moderation queue. When commenter “A” responds to a comment that “B” just left and both comments are in the queue, klaxons go off in my inner-thought-o-sphere. How could “A” know what “B” just said when “B’s” comment is still hidden from public viewing.

Silly comment trolls. Keep trying to comment with as many false names as you want. You will not be fed.