A cafe. Ordinary. Beige.
Obvious exits: out to The TechnoRhetoricians' Bar and Grill
You see Stoogeway Grand Piano, Burke,
and Projectorator here.
The text below is a very edited version. What remains is mainly comments I thought were interesting. Anyone else is welcome to make their own highlights versions and I'll be glad to post them along with this one.
co-facilitator (with Mick Doherty, Editor of Kairos)
Eric says, "I reckon we should get this show officially going" Eric shows slide #1. * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * Welcome to RhetNet Cafe! Like RhetNet's other venues, the point of RhetNet Cafe to capture and continue conversations. The conversations that happen here will become part of the RhetNet collection of texts on the web (http://www.missouri.edu/rhetnet/). And, depending on the subject & all, these conversations might be appropriate for other publishing venues, print or net. Efforts to publish these things elsewhere, though, will happen in consultation and cooperation with the folks doing the talking. So it's important to take a minute to introduce ourselves here, and for guests to include their email addresses as well as their names. So, who are we? * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * Eric is eric crump, university of missouri booboo is Jane Lasarenko, WTAMU, aka email@example.com PeteS is Pete Sands, U Maine at Presque Isle Mick is Mick Doherty, Editor, Kairos -- and tonight, Vanna to Eric's Pat. sandyet is sandye thompson, tx woman's u JanetC is Janet Cross outta Northridge...CAl Stat that is cath is catherine spann, univ. of arkansas at little rock Amber_Guest says, "I am David Ross; I teach English as a Second Language at Houston Community College: firstname.lastname@example.org" JanetC snickers at Mick. Camille is Camille Langston @Texas Woman's U JanetC eyes Mick's wardrobe warily. Mick [Vanna] introduces Mike Salvo, Texas Tech Eric shows slide #2. * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * On 23 June 1996, EduPage published the following item... PEER REVIEW and THE INTERNET Scientists attending a conference in Denmark sponsored by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) were almost unanimous in dismissing electronic challenges to the tradition of peer review for scientific publications, although there was also wide agreement about the benefits of the Internet for the exchange of scientific information (through the speeding up of peer review and the developing use of the Internet for distribution of 'preprints' that allow 'open peer commentary'). (The Economist 22 Jun 96) * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * Amber_Guest says, "OK, OK already, what's all this about Kuhn's legacy?" Mick says, "[Amber] the concept of paradigm shift is becoming very important to online publishers. paradigms can shift without actually disappaering ... but perhaps we'll get into that in detail later." Eric shows slide #3. * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * Some questions come immediately to mind: What do these scientists mean by 'peer review'? How is it different in practice and function from 'peer commentary'? What do we mean by 'peer review'? How do our interpretations compare with traditional assumptions? What difference does the medium for scholarly work make? How will scholarship and peer review be transformed by the net? If those are overriding concerns for this discussion, some comments made this week on Rhetnt-L might serve as catalysts for the conversation... * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * PeteS says, "and what is the difference between the "challenge" posed by e-communication, versus the speeding up of the peer review process, which i take to be a good thing?" Eric [to david]: for my part, i have a hunch scholarship's most jarring shift in the move from print to net publishing is going to come with the effects on peer review douglas says, "Query: why _is_ the peer review process blind? " Eric [to douglas]: objectivity (which folks still seem to believe in) MikeS says, "but pete, doesn't the blind part of blind review encourage unnecessarily harsh critique? i know the interactive model *kairos* has developed drives some reviewers crazy ... but no one has been (obviously) mean " Camille says, "Maybe our peer review seems more brutal because we focus on style (as Mick mentioned), which makes our writing more personal than the sciences' search for data" beckster [to Eric]: I used to think blind reviews made it easier for folks to get good quality feedback...but I'm really questioning that now beckster nods to mikes....thinks that the "dialogic" review Kairos uses is MUCH more beneficial....both sides feel a responsibility douglas doesn't grace traci's comment with a response. And says to Eric, I know it isn't always (as I've experienced with _Kairos_!) but what I'm asking is what is the rational for _any_ peer review to be blind? Camille says, "Doesn't blind peer review remove subjectivity?" Mick says, "remove subjectivity?" JanetC asks Camille, "Can anything remove subjectivity...and if so....would that be a good thing?" Eric says, "i think the problem with blind review--and with any review in which reviewers remain uncredited--is that writers and reviewers are put in oppositional relation to each other. " Mick says, "making reviews blind *allows* for MORE subjectivity, I'd think." beckster [to Camille]: NOTHING removes subjectivity. But I think that's what the aim was. we were just naive enough to buy into that booboo says, "Strikes me that most peer review constitutes opportunities for reviewers to blow their own horns and critical positions...rarely have I seen review comments that help the writer improve her position." Eric says, "they might both hope for quality, but it seems (my impression anyway) that reviewers are loyal to the Discipline and writers are loyal to the topic at hand and to the audience Out There" douglas [to booboo]: but if the peer-review process was made available, perhaps some of those reviewers would find it in their own best interests to do a good job (available to the end-readers, that is). MikeS wonders why print journals are so derned nervous if on-line peer review can (ostensibly) be so easily rebuked and invalidated? methinks (s)he doth protest too much. JanetC wonders at a discipline which needs protextion...hmmm...mu st not be very strong on its own merit Eric shows slide #4. * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * Suzanne Cherry: The question then becomes, how do we convince colleagues of the quality of our communities and communication? How do we prove ourselves? How do we receive validation? Those are harder questions and ones I'm not sure I can answer. * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * beckster [to Eric]: Based on my limited experience, I'd say so. and it's a function of how specialized folks are, as well as the pressure for them to publish, etc. as individuals rather than members of a community Eric figures with RhetNet, we simply say that *conversations we find interesting count* and if traditional scholars don't agree, they don't have to play Eric says, "that is, *participation in conversations* counts (in terms of professional development, if not advance)" Mick says, "[to Eric] "Conversations" COnversations? What's this mean on your vitae? You hazve a plae called conversations? Tenure ... DENIED!" douglas says, "Interactive pee-review seems like a good idea (and this goes on to address Suzane's auery as well) if the reviewers are recognised as "experts" in the fields and subjects they review, then they will be more likely to protect their reputations as such by giving constructive criticism, and the resultant paper will be percieved as being validated by the veritable seal of approval from those reviewers." Eric [to Mick]: fine. don't want no stinkin tenure anyway if it's going to be that way about it Mick .oO(pee-review?) Eric says, "no wait. I can do better than that..." beckster nods to douglas...THERE's the *ethos* that blind reviewed articles seem to have Eric says, "I think what we're valuing is really the *same thing* that scholars have always valued. They don't call it conversation, they call it publication, but *that's what publication IS*" Mick says, "you better do better than that eric -- lots of people in this room probably DO want tenure someday, i bet." PeteS says, "but they *do* call it conversation ... its one of the most popular metaphors around for scholarship, eric." booboo says, "Ah, but there's the crunch, they call it that and nod their heads until we who engage try to call it that too." MikeS says, "long, drawn out, impenetrable, unbearable print based conversation ;-)" Mick says, "But this, Pete -- this here, this MOO right now -- this really is formatted like a conversation, juvenile pee-=review jokes and all. This, I the Traditionalist Saith, Doth Not Counteth." Eric says, "so what we can argue is that--as different as they may appear at first--scholarly conversations on the net are actually strongly rooted in scholarly conversations in print. they differ in speed, in convention, in citation, but they are, at heart, the same thing" PeteS says, "taylor and erbin ... though ... even call MUDing and other e-forms a *responsibility* for scholars today." Eric says, "so we create a conversational scholarly journal and call conversation publication. now we're even speaking their language :)" Camille says, "So, I'm getting that collaboration (positive peer review) is to be equated with e-journals, whereas individualism (negative peer review) is equated with print journals. I think this is what everyone is saying, but I'm wondering how true these bi-polar assertions hold." Mick says, "Camille, I like the polarity you draw there, because it really supports the idea Tari brought up in the e-mail conversation ..." Mick says, "That we, in talking about this stuff, sound *arrogant* -- like e-journals are *better* than print journals." MikeS says, "each print convention is good at its own thing -- print is a slow moving, fairly dependable form. i'd like to kep it for what it's good for." douglas [to booboo]: actually interactive peeR review can be instantiated in print journals--it just takes more work. And I haven't seen it done in either the humanities or the sciences. Mick says, "they're different. they do different things. don't introduce the word "better" or the converstation stops dead, like at Victor's panel at the confernce last month." Eric shows slide #5. * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * Mark Gellis: We can also use a little "blackmail." If any of them would be willing, why not get some of the really big names in one of the more conservative areas of English studies, to publish 'e-version only" articles...for anyone in that field, an article by such a big name is a must, and it would force them to use the technology to get a copy. It would also be a strong argument in forcing them to accept e-publishing (via the credibility of the big name...if they accept it, it must be okay). * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * Camille says, "But if e-jounals do not strive for improvement, won't they be the same as print journals only electronic?" douglas thinks one of the main benefits of e-journals is seeing how *any* type of publishing may be different from the traditional models currently in use (and I use the word currently rather losely here). Mick wonders about this concept: Eric and I briefly discussed teh idea of putting *this* MOO up for review with CCC or RR or some such. Knowing that, do you suddenly change your tone of contribution? (We would get permissions from all involved first, of course -- but the question stands) douglas [to Mick]: would you edit out the scatalogical comments or leave them in? MikeS would be *more* outrageous traci says, "well, i wouldn't have said what i just said. i woulda just stayed quiet" Mick says, "See! That's exactly mypoint. I made a pee-review joke. Do we edit that out?" booboo says, "NO~!" beckster [to Mick]: undoubtedly, if we knew this was *destined* for print, the tone would change.....hey, we're rhetoricians.... we understand about audience, purpose, etc. Eric says, "and this can work to our advantage in more ways than one. what if you become known as a scholar who risks publishing in these weird e-journals. perhaps a department full of old school scholars will sail your CV into the circular file, BUT: would you want to work with that gang? wouldn't your interests be thwarted at every turn? wouldn't you have to wait for them all to retire before you could have fun? " PeteS thinks it depends ... is it an article or a transcript? Eric says, "NOOOOO thanks. I *want* to be screen out of situations where I would be screened out" traci says, "i don't think i'd be able to write at all really" PaulaP says, "PeteS it seems to me it would be more of a transcript than an article...." JanetC says, "Ya gonna edit the life outta the conversation? Where does it stop?" booboo [to Eric]: I agree, but I also feel that you can only change the system from within...if you're out, you don't have a say anymore. Eric [to booboo]: I used to think that too. I'm no longer convinced. Eric [to booboo]: I'm beginning to think that institutions only change in response to pressure from without. the people within are put to work enacting those changes, but they don't provoke them Mick says, "I'm trying to picture "writing" this for CCC. Would Eric's metniong of the interactive historigraphy need a footnote which explained it>? O an URL in the footnote?" beckster [to booboo]: they have been published here and there.....but they are tougher to read in print than as they're generated Jade_Guest says, "would those not used to this be interested in this transcript? or would they find the "wading through" not worth it?" Eric shows slide #6. * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * Albert Rouzie: Maybe the notion of competing with print doesn't get us where we want to go. We keep talking about how conversational genres like e-mail are different--hypertext too--from print. Competiton levels those differences when in fact the new media are valuable precisely because they accomplish new forms of communication. Acceptance will be gradual, driven perhaps by citation, participation, and maybe most of all, need for the knowledge produced (and the process of production) by the new genres. * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * beckster says, "my guess is that, if these types of things are destined for print, they'll need to be edited so that they are easier for non-MOOers to follow" mday says, "the sense of freshness of the ideas as they happened and intertwined with other ideas, for one." Amber_Guest says, "I find MOO transcripts very hard to read, and I don't think that the difficulty points out to anything particularly profound about the nature of the text." Jade_Guest says, "if we criticize the internet for trying to push print classic on it, why are we trying to push print digital on print??" Eric [to david]: there's too much of the moment here. taken out of its (real)time, the conversation is sapped of its native energy, which informs its meaning Eric says, "same for putting it on the web, which we plan to do. still froze. still needs help." Eric says, "I like albert's comment: value comes from need. when the knowledge produced and stored online-only becomes worth coming after, those in power will come after it and reward will follow" Claudine says, "wait a sec--as teachers, do any of you who teach in the moo accept transcripts as finished work? I mean, isn't this a starting place?" Jade_Guest says, "if we're trying to "market" what we do to benefit us, cramming it down their throats in a manner hard to handle isn't the answer. packaging is important" MikeS thinks there's a difference between on-line, hypertext writing and MOO writing. MOO is more akin to conference discussions. i don't know .... i don't know how much credit can be given to MOO scripts. for instance, all the hours i've spent on tuesday cafe ... how could i count *that*? Eric [to Claudine]: I don't like the idea of revision as refinement. I'd rather we thought in terms of continuing, expanding, dissipating from here rather than turning around and fiddling with this particular bunch of words. better, I think, to keep after the ideas and let the words trail after us like a wake Eric shows slide #7. * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * Do not seek to follow in the footsteps of the men of old; seek what they sought. Basho * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * douglas [to MikeS]: I put "particpant in the Netoric Project on my vita. I think it should count, ergo, for me it does. beckster says, "I think we have to be careful NOT to claim it as more valuable than it is" Mick says, "Douglas, c'mon. The people hiring or promoting you will decide if it counts. Not you." MikeS says, "oh yeah, tuesday has been an ever-increasing source of inspiration. and i know i'll have a special regard for everyone i've worked with at tuesday ... but are we doing the wrong thing by trying to get it recognized? i mean, won't such acceptance just KILL the interaction?" douglas [to Mick]: I have to decide that it's important first, or it wouldn't appear on my vita. And it's not the *only* thing on there--I just treat it as important. booboo says, "No, we have to convince committees of the worth of whatever these things are, not establish equivalencies. We do, however, you're right, have to speak their language somewhat." Eric says, "in other words, we *must* break free of the shackles of print *convention* but we don't need to (and probably wouldn't want to) leave behind the broad social function of scholarly interaction. " beckster [to booboo]: so are conversations at conferences, but no one claims those. I'm not saying this is equal exactly, just that we shouldn't overstate it mday says, "well, could be more valuable as it's all written down. You can word process it and even run a search for key words." douglas [to Mick]: but maybe if we edit this and publish in CCC or RR, then the PTR people may be shown its professional value and perhaps a few will start going (if you virtually build it -- and physically bill it-- they will come) Mick favors archiving, sure. That was the impetus for Kairos a year ago. But htat brings us back to peer-review ... the K stuff is peer reivewed and archived. This stuff isn't peer-reviewed ... and it's archived. a weird juxtaposing. Eric says, "this stuff isn't peer reviewed??????????????????????? " Eric says, "back to our original question" ______________________ | | Eric holds up a BIG sign: | what IS peer review? | |______________________| MikeS [to douglas]: for the first few issues, i'm going to look at what has already been done, spontaeously. then i want to visit out-of-the-way lists ... i think of it as a "best of" which requires me to troll and find the best... Eric says, "I think everybody here is reviewing just as fast as they can, and since we're all peers...." booboo says, "I'd like to define peer review or see it evolve into ongoing expansions of ideas (just like print) in different forms." mday says, "Claudine, will it always be an in-crowd?" traci says, "this stuff IS peer reviewed, probably in a way closer to the meaning of peer review than blind reviews. there is a giving and taking, feedback on ideas, requests for clarification and support. this thing does a better job at peer review than many peer review seem to" beckster [to Eric]: but we're not making evaluative comments that will result in textual changes Eric says, "yeah, booboo: ongoing expansion of ideas. " cath agrees w/traci mday says, "neat traci! In a way, we're reviewing each other as we go!" douglas says, "as we are all technorhetoricians, we could workshop the transcript into a written and peer-revied essay (simultaneously accomplished) thus collapsing 2 steps into one)" booboo says, "Peer review will always involve evaluation...ought to, also. But it's how that evaluation is given/taken/shared/ etc. that might change. " Mick says, "I'm talking about peer review in the manner which the Old Trads will understand the term." Eric says, "this is different that print in terms of conventions, not function" mday says, "And I'm talking about reinventing notions of peer review and collaborative scholarship" traci says, "we do evaluate. we don't respond to comments which aren't 'valued'; we respond at length to those that we do value" booboo says, "Some ideas on MOO and off aren't worth pursuing/expanding " booboo says, "And the review process will take care of those." traci says, "and it seems to me a nod is an agreeable evaluation" Eric says, "the text doesn't sit still, so we can't rip into style and grammar and organization. we keep ideas in play. everything gets challenged or consented to. everything is negotiated. that's what peer review ought to be. a group working together to negotiate toward qualiity" traci says, "i am not saying this is the same as traditional peer review" MikeS [to Eric]: but it may be a long time before mainstream academia ets over its paper fetish Mick says, "traci, you know i agree with that. but grumpy old traditionalist laffs in your face. if we start caliming *this* is peer-reviewed, we DEVALUE the term overall as we apply it other places." beckster says, "again, though, the point of THIS kind of peer dialogue/review is NOT to alter existing text" Eric says, "i hate to see us bow to the print conventions that have been misshapen by long habit" Eric [to Mick]: thing is, it's not even a matter of medium. *this* is what peer review could and should look like in print, too! beckster [to Eric]: but I wonder about the logistics/viability of this type of peer reveiw in print. Yes, it might result in better end product, but it would simply take too long douglas [to Eric]: I agree--but this medium is allowing us to experiment with what peer review *could* be in ways that we couldn't get away with in print (plus we get to make pee jokes) MikeS [to Eric]: but i want to be able to read something, gt it over with, move on, and read something else. transcripts such as this are *not* kind to readers. what about just wanting to read a bit and move on? is that readerly text eliminated? Mick says, "I think we gotta choose our battles REAL carefully. Re-defining-re-valuaing a term like "peer reivew" is unwinnable if we're worried about seeing something "count"" mday says, "Maybe we needn't call it peer-review, however." Eric notes that in the item from Edupage, the science scholars dismissed electronic threats to peer review, but allowed as how 'open peer commentary' was ok withthem Eric says, "so, mick, they may be closer to coming around that you might think :)" mday says, "Why does it have to be "review"?" MikeS says, "peer view?" Mick ooohs! Peer E-value-ation! Eric shows slide #8. * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * Tari Fanderclai: I find it kind of amusing that we're talking about print snobbery and elitism among the traditionalists. Don't we do a lot of the same thing--suggesting that what they're doing is outmoded and inferior and everyone should get online and learn the skills we already developed? Heck, a lot of electronic publications have more gadgetry than content, and a lot of them are all but inaccessible with the equipment found on the desks of so many academics, particularly in the humanities. * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * douglas [to Eric]: based on what I've seen in print, I suspect that the science scholars dismiss electronic peer review (especially open peer review) because it would ultimately devolve into flame wars! _____________________________________________ | | | tari, btw, sent her regrets. she wanted to | Eric holds up a BIG sign: | be here. but not bad enough to miss a trip | | to an island off maine | |_____________________________________________| Mick says, "E-journals are often critiqued for valuing style over substance. THAT is a battle worth fighting." Eric [to douglas]: I wonder, though, to what extent the tendency toward viciousness is a product of the current system? I suspect it is, myself Eric [to Camille]: but what if review remains focused on ideas rather than texts, on continuing conversations and extending knowledge *together* rather than competing for 'scarce' recognition resources Mick says, "Eric are you separating ideas and texts? how?" Eric [to Mick]: yes. 'emphasis' is my knife. if the purpose of a text is to further a conversation, to keep an idea in play, that's different than if the text itself is the focus of attention douglas [to Camille]: it depends on how well we keep in mind the idea that we are engaged in a profession and thus should be "professional" and contribute constructively to that "ongoing conversation" rather then hijacking the dialogue with flames (carnival, however, is not the same as flames, so I think the banter we engage in, when not destructive, is acceptable --and Bakhtin would love it.) Eric says, "in print, too much weight lands on the text. space is so precious in terms of money and recognition that every text has to be as perfect as possible. " Eric says, "in print, the text takes over the ideas. just like in the classroom, where grades take over for learning" Eric says, "the comparison is no accident!" Eric shows slide #9. * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * Nick Carbone: As we work in both print and pixels, if we cite the pixels in the print, then attention will be paid. When someof us are up for tenure, if that still exists down the line, and we point to how often our e-journal work has been cited, that'll build validity. * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * beckster [to Eric]: you're denying any "poem" then, at least in the rosenblattian sense Mick says, "eric, help me -- Text:Grades as Ideas:???" Scott sighs. Eric says, "I'm not familiar with the rosenblattian sense, but poems can exist in dynamic convesational environments. see CREWRT-L." beckster thinks they can exist in the connection between a reader and a text, too Eric says, "not text:grades exactly. publish-or-perish:grades as ideas:learning" traci says, "has anyone considered a citation index for online work? i know those exist for print journals and such...why not for online work? i mean you choose the sources when you have a citation index (you don't try to archive the world)." Eric [to traci]: good idea! that's something ACW might ought to provide! Mick eyes The Daedalean Citation Index created and maintained by Saint Traci Gardner Mick hmms eric's analogy which equates publich-or-perish with ideas. I thot one was positive and one was antiquted Eric says, "I think I got that backwards mick" Eric says, "should be: pub-or-die:ideas as grades:learning" Camille says, "delivery is an important part of all rhetoric--electronic or print" Eric wonders if that isn't conflating expansive rhetoric with style (not that they're unrelated): expansive substance Eric [to Mick]: in print, ideas are compressed. the treatment seeks depth over superficiality. pack as much into those pages as possible. on the net, people negotiate, meander, follow tangents, return, refigure, talk about movies & pets, then get back to the point. lots of words. copious words. the substance remains, but is dissipated. Eric shows slide #10. * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * Michael J. Salvo: *my* personal feelings are that through publishing _kairos_ as best we can, looking at and maybe even influencing (positively, or negatively -- ie, 'we're not going to do *that*') other on-line publications, and then joining debates such as this, we will begin to develop some mores and traditions for on-line publication. and a big part of that process is making mistakes, recognizing them as such, and then adjusting the process accordingly. it's a long, tiring, labor- intensive process -- and the end can't even be fathomed let alone seen. there may be no light at the end of this tunnel -- a publication of becoming (?). * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * _______________________________________________ | | | Just to remind everyone: This session is | Eric holds up a BIG sign: | publishable and will be published in RhetNet | |_______________________________________________| ______________________________________________ | | | If anyone is interested in attempting to | Eric holds up a BIG sign: | shape it for print or for other net venues, | | we can... | |______________________________________________| _______________________________________________ | | | http://www.missouri.edu/rhetnet/pr_27june96. | Eric holds up a BIG sign: | txt | |_______________________________________________| _____________________________________________ | | | Me & Mick would like to thank you all very | Eric holds up a BIG sign: | much for coming along tonight totalk about | | this stuff! | |_____________________________________________|
RhetNet home | Net/Texts | Peer Review
hits since 09 July 1996