Derek Mueller, who teaches composition at Park University has been using Weblogs in his class, and he gives this description of blogging in his standards document:
The purposes for writing in the weblog are varied. First, it is an expressive venue, publicly readable, which is interactive because of the possibility of comment, interchange and dialogue. Ideas expressed in the weblog should be carefully thought out. In other words, because this is asynchronous writing, there is no reason to “hurry” through the writing process. The writing should reflect you efforts to connect your own ideas to new information, new understandings, and new ways of thinking about your own ideological perspective. It’s a space for making sense of the assigned reading and related texts, together, by sharing ideas and views and by making sense of difficult concepts. Rather than becoming a pundit, you should use the blog space this semester for exercising your ability to make connections with the ideas of others–people from class and from texts on the Internet that inform you, complicate your thinking, or expand your understanding of new, interesting ideas.
I think that’s a pretty good description of the Weblog process and fits pretty nicely with the recent discussions about the connections between reading and blogging. And on his own site he adds this nugget about Weblogs in general:
Blogs turn narrow conceptions of reading and writing as private, independent, and isolationist upside down in favor of an extracurricular literacy network–a connected arena of extraspatial (beyond the walls we meet between) contact and community.