How the Internet Works

Ironically, this cartoon came to my attention via Reddit on Facebook. Would you agree that this is how the flow of information usually works on the internet? Are you usually among the first to become aware of a meme, joke, or piece of news? Or are you typically among the last? Or somewhere in between? [Read More...]

Footnoting Blogs in Academic Publications

Christopher Skinner asked a really great question on the Crux Sola blog: Do online resources belong in academic footnotes. Chris offers a qualified “no.” I would suggest a qualified “yes” instead. Several people who responded to the question rightly pointed out that even the best blog posts are more like conference papers than articles – not [Read More...]

If The Princess Bride Were Remade Today

The image is from Jeff Carter. I try to make this blog an exception to the classic blunder mentioned in the updated movie dialogue. The image is funny because we can all relate to it. And so it is also sad. Serious, profound, deep discussion has taken place on the internet, and continues to do so. We may [Read More...]

Even on Social Media

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How Did Luther Die?

I was asked recently how Luther died, and wanted to fact-check what I thought the answer to that question was. So I did what anyone would do – I typed the question in on Google. Here is the top part of the result: Am I the only one surprised that a question about “Luther” gives top [Read More...]

Can University Walls Keep Out The Internet?

This is my conference paper for the Metacriticism of Biblical Studies section at SBL: ______ Can University Walls Keep Out The Internet? James F. McGrath, Butler University   ABSTRACT Statements can be found on the websites of many sectarian educational institutions, indicating that faculty and students are required to subscribe to a particular doctrinal statement. [Read More...]

The Creation of the Internet

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The Internet Is Not Killing Religion

There have been a lot of posts about a recent study which showed a correlation between increasing internet use and decreasing religiosity. Some of them have headlines about “the internet killing religion.” It is worth asking some hard questions: If religion can be eliminated by the internet, what was it, and is it something worth [Read More...]

Tempted In Every Way As We Are

Hebrews 4:15 says that Jesus was “tempted in every way as we are – yet without sin.” I had someone mention to me a book which suggested that this must have included same-sex attraction, since otherwise Jesus was not tempted in every way the author was. This seems to take things too far – in [Read More...]

Saddest Search of the Internet Age

One of the reasons I focus so much attention on information literacy skills, and require students to not merely say “I found it on JSTOR,” is that it is important to know how to cope without resources that we normally rely on. The best example of this in our time is relying on Googling for [Read More...]

Do People Have a Right to Anonymity?

This morning while I was busy with other things, an individual who goes by the nickname “Crude” got into a dispute with a commenter named Stuart32 here on the blog, and posted about it on his own blog “Crude Ideas.” In the process, the question of whether one of them knew something about the other’s actual [Read More...]