Ed Bilodeau

<< Back to Home

This weblog had moved: http://www.coolweblog.com/bilodeau/

# Notice (Oct 19/05): So ends my stay here on Blogger. This morning Google implemented an anti-spam 'feature' that forces me to answer a challenge phrase when I want to post to my own blog. No notice of the change, nothing. Worse is that it doesn't even work! I type the phrase, submit, "An error occured", post deleted. Damn you, Google. Chances are I will revive my blog somewhere else, sometime soon. I'll post the new coordinates here as soon as they become available. (BTW, I'm unable to post anything to my RSS stream, so I'd appreciate it if readers could spread the word and ask people to take a look at this notice)

Update (Oct 19/05, ~noon): After a frustrating few hours (and not just trying out alternatives to Blogger), I've decided that this is a good time to take a break from all this. A day? A week? Who knows. But I need to step away from it before I pass a heavy magnet over the whole mess.

Update 2: According to this post, the reason I'm seeing the CAPTCHA (challenge phrase) is that Blogger has classified my blog as spam. Thanks. User for five years and now I'm spam. I searched the Blogger site, but there is no mention of how to get the spam flag turned off. There is also no way of contacting anyone at Blogger. Wow. Spam they say I am, so spam I must be. Maybe it is time to take a break.

Thursday, December 16, 2004

Interacting with Computers : Participating in civil society: the case of networked communities :
Abstract: A community computer network facilitates civic participation by providing pervasive local resources online and by connecting people to local communication and discussion channels, public and non-profit organization leaders and members, and many other civic resources. We present findings from longitudinal data (two rounds between 2001 and 2002) of a stratified random survey of 100 households in a mature community network, the Blacksburg Electronic Village (BEV). We offer exploratory and confirmatory analyses, including a ‘civic effects’ model, that show demographic characteristics (education, age) and psychological factors (extroversion) explain staying informed, collective efficacy, group membership, activism, and using the Internet for civic and political purposes. The model further explains differences in respondents' involvement in local issues once they go online. Informed activists with multiple group memberships become more involved in local issues once going online, whereas informed non-activists become less involved once online. Our study suggests that in order to play a constructive role in creating a more civil society, community networks should explicitly pursue strategies that encourage community activism. One way to do this, given the strong role of association membership in activism, is for ISPs to offer bundled standard Internet applications at low cost to non-profit community groups (e.g. email for leadership, online discussion for members, web space). Community networks should also promote and support the use by local groups of innovative tools for non-experts, such as easy collaborative web-based tools for information production and collaboration.
Full article available to subscribers only.