Judging from feedback on recent posts, we have been delighted to see that Teche’s readership is broader than we had imagined. Usually, we (the Teche team) don’t receive much feedback (except from colleagues at other universities, which usually starts and ends with “We love Teche.”).
So, when a recent post attracted an unprecedented jump in both comments and page views, we did a little exploring into what was happening. The post in question was written by a member of the Teche team, who was reflecting on his recent experience in dealing with uncertainty and change in the workplace – in this workplace. Comments on the blog, and on other platforms (albeit by some who apparently hadn’t actually read the piece) were unlike anything we’ve seen before on – or about – Teche.
Sensing – and understanding – the feelings behind many of the comments, we thought we’d take the opportunity to re-invite the community, to take the next step and write a post. Because that is what Teche is – a collaborative community blog, with posts written by anyone who is part of Macquarie’s Learning and Teaching community, and who is passionate about anything to do with university learning and teaching – including the impacts that ‘workplace change’ (which is a really awful euphemism) brings to that endeavour.
Not quite sure about blogging? Here’s a few 101s / FAQs:
What is a blog?
The definition from our Favourite Dictionary (guess why) offers this: a website created by a particular individual to record their opinions, interests, etc., often allowing comment from visitors.
Teche fits within this definition… if you see its creator as an eclectic, diverse, and sometimes very critical, learning and teaching university community, that also incorporates a growing external audience of engaged learning and teaching academics, professionals and students.
Why would I blog?
For the same reasons, anyone comments on, or indeed, writes anything: to communicate and share.
Teche contributions are all original, and all its contributors are Macquarie’s current and past students and staff. Up to now, the blog has been mainly used to share news, tips, opportunities, promote events, and profile people and the work they are doing. (However, we’re wondering now, with all that is happening around Macquarie, is this function about to expand? We hope so.)
Who can blog?
Anyone. And when it comes to Teche, anybody who is part of this university’s learning and teaching community: students, staff, partners, stakeholders, leaders (Chancellor, if you are reading this, we’d welcome posts from you).
We’re fortunate here that all contributors are able to post with minimal interference from the blog ‘owners’, a role shared by colleagues in the Learning Innovation Hub (LIH) and the Faculties. Non-spam comments are always approved, and there has been no real need for strict moderation to date. (Incidentally, the comments under the post mentioned above were all approved by the post’s author Mike Catabay, who confirms that the sentiments expressed were not unexpected.)
Why would anyone blog for Teche (especially after seeing the comments posted after the recent article, on the blog, and elsewhere)?
None of us at Teche’s ‘home’ expected the post’s commentary to ooze into Facebook, where people felt free to speculate, and even troll. We understand of course, that this is standard MO on Facebook (but we did expect a bit more from colleagues on the ‘I support Macquarie staff’ page). For the record, Mike is a staff member at Macquarie, he has experienced imposed and intense ‘workplace change’ over the past few years, and now, like so many of us, is facing more. Like many of us, he’s not a manager or management puppet “commissioned” to write the post (seriously?!), and yes, he has a mortgage and kids, and a job he would like hang on to.
With regard to why you might blog for Teche – well, your (differing, informed) opinions, perspectives, reflections, and provocations, are both welcome and encouraged. In fact now more than ever, we want your thoughts in a post, and further discussion via the comments, because this is the right forum for such discussion – because it’s our forum.
Please do consider writing for Teche, (and if you don’t want to, please be considerate of those that do). We want this online space to be a healthy, sustainable community environment that can serve us all, and we’ve defied resource and other constraints to keep it as somewhere we can freely and respectfully discuss things that matter.
And because (to be honest) we love Teche too.
If you’d like to write for Teche, please contact the Teche team at firstname.lastname@example.org.