Linking

1. Connecting to locations. When we write, we might write about specific places, people or events. Often, those events or places have websites. A very basic form of connective writing, then, would include creating links to those places. (Ex. I like the Denver Broncos; Bob Ross was a great artist.)

2. Connecting to ideas. This is a basic citation. Alan Levine calls it a linktribution. One of my pet peeves about teaching blogging and hyperlinking is that so often, people will link to the parent page of a website rather than the page where they got their specific information. The best part about linking to specific information is that it's very transparent. I can trust you as a writer right away if I can see that your links are accurate and that the quotes that you use are reproduced accurately. (Ex.

3. Connecting to self. Sometimes the best ideas that we can find are ones that we had in the past. The advantage to keeping and archiving a blog is that you can almost literally travel back in time to visit with the old you. One way to connect with the old you is to quote yourself and respond.

4. Connecting for attention. When students are writing for specific audiences, they sometimes need to get the attention of the folks that they are writing for. One way to do so in an online environment is to include a link to a site or blog or wiki or something that their intended audience might be keeping an eye on. When the audience searches for references to the link the writer uses, then that writer will discover the piece of writing. Most bloggers that I know are aware of this, and they maintain an RSS feed (or several) of searches for specific links or terms that relate to them. For example, I use Technorati to provide me with an RSS feed of any reference to the URL of my blog. When someone writes about, and links back to, something that's been posted there, I find out about it and can go check it out.