An encouraging headline (there seem to be a few of these popping up) from the trenches that “Erasing Divide, College Leaders Take to Blogging,” though a closer read shows how tenuous and how timid these first steps are.

While some colleges and their presidents have seen their reputations shredded on student blogs, and others have tried to limit what students and faculty members may say online, about a dozen or so presidents, like Dr. McGuire, are vaulting the digital and generational divide and starting their own blogs.

Veterans of campus public relations disasters warn that presidents blog at their peril; “an insane thing to do” is how Raymond Cotton, a lawyer who advises universities and their presidents in contract negotiations, describes it. But these presidents say blogs make their campuses seem cool and open a direct line, more or less, to students, alumni and the public.

Still, part of getting through to the other side is wallowing in the disruption for a while.

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