Thursday, 12 July 2012

Crowdfunding and crowdblogging worked but not all is well in archaeology

After starting blogging I have noticed two things [among others]. Firstly, there are people dropping in comments that are basically just links to their or their client’s business web site. Secondly, a few people push their topics for blogging. Sometimes this is plain awkward when they suggest things that are farfetched from archaeology; I was for example asked to write something about ecology. However, sometimes the approaches are appropriate, such as with the FlagFen Lives! Initiative with DigVenture.

I wrote about Flag Fen initiative back in March. Now I returned to their web site in order to find if they have managed to raise the funding needed to run the initial field season. Yes, they apparently got all of their target of £25,000. Now the excavation has been confirmed and it will run between the July 23 and August 12. It will be interesting to see how everything pans out at a later stage.

I have also been interested in checking the results of the Day of Archaeology 2012 and its entries. Sadly, there is no general participant board, yet, nor a map presenting a selection of the width and breadth of the entries. However, I read an interesting entry from a last year’s postdoc participant who has decided to get a proper job suggesting that people should have a Plan B and decided to keep twittering and participating otherwise in archaeology to keep the flame alive. I also found a long piece from Wessex Archaeology and a cartoon from Museum of London Archaeology. Everything seem to be there – U.S. military veterans engaging in archaeology, a large excavation project at Gabii in Rome stalling for Pietro e Paolo bank holiday and Spanish archaeologists writing in Spanish. I got a thank you e-mail that was lamenting the fact that the participant numbers were down but that is not necessarily unexpected taking into account that the building trade is slow and the archaeology departments, such as the one at Birmingham, are in danger.

The closure of the award winning institute of archaeology and antiquity and the loss of 19 jobs at Birmingham has now been confirmed. There have been many allegations from one party and another. This video and a retranslation of Downfall offer one view to the matter.

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