In Common List

In Common this week: “Departed but not gone”

Welcome fellow Commoners,

This week I’m looking backwards at sites that have been left dormant on the Commons and offer a kind of “distant reading. The title of this post comes from the title of one of those sites, dormant for over five years. (BTW: If anyone out there is looking for a corpus to explore, I’ve only scratched the surface here. Like many of the sites that will be referenced in this post, this is a hint at a project that could be. But it’s also a fascinating glimpse at the history of this digital community)

The idea comes from me doing some “spring cleaning” in my Commons account–removing myself from groups that have been inactive for years or from sites I no longer administer.

It got me thinking about the sites on the Commons that haven’t been deleted and persist years since they’ve been touched. The homepage pushes the most recently active sites, but what can we learn from looking at the opposite side of that spectrum?

I decided to make a list of the titles and post it here. I’ve organized them loosely around themes I noticed. These themes suggest experiences that we Commoners share–truly what we have “in common.” I think they also represent opportunities: they are ideas, ready for someone to pick up again.

To make the list I searched the Commons for sites that haven’t been active in more than three years, going all the way back to 2009 when The Commons first went live. I haven’t included titles that are simply people’s names, opting to share those which are more suggestive. Many of the actual sites are blank, with the default sample pages or simply an error apologizing for not finding anything. Sometimes the sites have content, though. Some are time capsules, others perplexing, funny, poignant, sad, self-depreciating, infuriating.

I’m interested in what you all see.

All the best,



Many sites suggest a traveling narrative:

Beyond the Pale

path less traveled by

Just Passing By

Odysseys and Homelands (sic)

Others revel in their unfinished-ness:

In Medias Res

Poems in Progress

Always a Working Title

Some capture a romantic or metaphysical self:

The Dilated Soul

My Passions


Collecting the Self

Inventing the Self

Many, like this list,  suggest a wandering mind:

Occasional Thoughts

Engaging Thought



Notes to myself


Thought Sphere

Public Ponderings

Thoughts and Musings

ocasional intrpspections on the world…

Asymmetrical Thoughts and Other Freudian Slips.

Some either are unfinished projects or sound like them:


Erotic Lit and etc

Delicious Food for Swallowing (actually about food that is easy to swallow)


Quant Made Fun

A Minor Map

Counter-Mapping Return

Measure of Justice

Queer Lines of Communication Digital Scrapbook


1960-1985 Computer Historical Moments for

Wrestling Freedom from a Realm of Necessity

Unsurprisingly, technology is a common theme:



Luddite No Mas

Datalogical Turn

Blog about to Bloom

super user dood

Code. Play. KILL.


Mistakes I’ve Made in WordPress So Far

Teaching is also a common theme, although there are clearly sub-themes in this group:

Things I say to my BlackBoard students

If I wasn’t a teacher…

Raised by CUNY

Adventures in Teaching


School Survival

My  “academic” self

Blackboard Awesome

Trials and Tribulations of a Library Science Stude (sic)

CUNY Comments

But there’s excitement for CUNY, too:

My Professors..I adore and respect a lot!


Graduate NYC!

And then there’s the grab-bag category:

Thanks for all the fish

Having Fun

The Sound of the Stick

It seems we are at an impass (sic)

Miss Informed

The People’s Suitcase

When it Rains…

In Memoriam

Departed but not gone

Planning for the future

Place to Try Things Out

Start Procrastinating…Tomorrow

Lazy Sunday

The Manifold


The Archive

Birds of a Feather

Feed Me Seymour!

DId We Break It

It Cannot be Trivial

In the Know How and Who

In Spite of Kryptonite

always a bridesmaid

Consequence of the Four Incapacities




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