There’s a set of posts all linked together at Many2Many about research on blogging. It’s an interesting thread, even if I do think that academic research about blogging is a bit of an odd topic. One point I will bring up is that traditional methods are not set in stone. Elijah says at one point that the discussion that goes on in blog posts and trackback’s isn’t the same as formal peer review. I can see the point there, but I think I disagree. I’m not an academic, so perhaps I’m missing some nuance to the meaning there. But I am a software developer, and we have a strong parallel experience in open source. Open source software has made a very strong case for an informal process open the public being at least on par with a formal process. Maybe if the blog based methods of communication aren’t living up to the old methods, we’re just not doing them quite correctly yet. I have every expectation that those issues will get worked through at some point, and future modes of communication will look a lot more like blogging (or at least borrow heavily from this set of mechanisms we’re evolving now).