Monday, September 28, 2009

Rules and Reminder for Blog-a-Ton 3!

Time for submissions is over!

Date for Blog-a-Ton
: October 3, 2009

Before I give you the details about posting, lets welcome the new Blog-a-Tonics

As you already know, the topic for Blog-a-Ton 3 has been finalised as:
The Indian Dream

Please follow these rules while publishing your post and thereafter:

  • The title of your post should be the topic itself; i.e. The Indian Dream
  • The post should start with this text within blockquotes and with link to this blog. Just copy the following HTML code and paste to ur post in Edit HTML mode:
  • The post should end with this text within blockquotes and with links to the comments section of this post and this blog. Just copy the following HTML code and paste to ur post in Edit HTML mode:
  • Publish the post on October 3, 2009 anytime between 0000 hrs and 2359 hrs.
  • Use the following code to provide direct link to your post.
    It will look like this: Vipul Grover - The Indian Dream and will link to your post.
    Please follow this rule to ensure easy navigability to your post as this time no separate list of the participants will be provided later on
  • Return on Oct 4 to vote for your favourite post. A separate notification for the same will be posted within 24 hours of the event's conclusion. So do not vote till then. Till then just enjoy reading the various entries, keeping in mind your favourite one.

Please use the following code to provide direct link to your post in the comments section.

Looking forward to great participation
Blog-a-Tonically Yours

Friday, September 25, 2009

Topic for Blog-a-Ton 3!

Date for Blog-a-Ton 3 : October 3, 2009

Lets welcome the new Blog-a-Tonics who have taken our count to 75.

Blog-a-Tonics have overwhelmingly voted for The Indian Dream as the topic for Blog-a-Ton 3. I must congratulate Indian Pundit for suggesting it.

All in a Day's work was another favourite. Lets hope we take it up in future.

While dealing with the topic, you have the freedom to treat it the way you want. Its upto you; which genre of writing you choose, i.e. simple essay-type, article, dialogue, short story (even 55 Fiction for that matter), poem or whatever you feel like.

Moreover, its upto you; which mood or tone you choose to set it in, i.e. serious, witty, humour, optimistic or whatever that comes to you naturally.

Again, you have the freedom to choose the language of communication. However, we'll suggest you to write in English to put across your views to the maximum members which will also help you when its the time to vote for the BATOM.

I hope this clarification helps the new Blog-a-Tonics.

So, you all have ample time to write it but you'll have to wait till Oct 3 to post it finally along with everyone else.

Other rules regarding posting will be conveyed to you later.

Wishing you a free flow of thoughts
Blog-a-Tonically yours
Vipul Grover

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Blog-a-Ton is back.. Lets make it 3 times lucky!!!

Date for Blog-a-Ton 3 : October 3, 2009
Topic declaration : September 26, 2009

So here we are back with the third edition of Blog-a-Ton after conducting two successful ones in the last two months.

Membership has been increasing all this time. So lets welcome the latest members first of all.
I must thank all of you for replying the couple of queries last time. On the basis of the general consensus reached there, we will continue with a single topic for the Blog-a-Ton 3 too.

So with this, I invite your suggestions for the topic for Blog-a-Ton 3. Please keep the following things in mind while suggesting.
  • The topic should be general in scope, so that more and more Blog-a-Tonics can participate.
  • Before suggesting, go through the previous ones for sure.
  • If you like any of those, VOTE for them rather than giving a new suggestion.
  • If you like a suggested topic but don't like the wordings, still VOTE for it and alongside suggest a new title for it.
  • Give your suggestions and votes in the comments section of this post.
  • Please keep these points in mind to make our job easier.
Kindly volunteer to compile all the suggestions every third day and post them together in the comments section to help others.

Looking forward to some interesting suggestions
Yours blog-a-tonically

Thursday, September 10, 2009

BATOM for Sep 2009 is/are...


So, finally we come to an end of a great event which saw the participation of 28 Indian bloggers from home and away who came together to give their brilliant insights into Teachers : Aaj Kal.

Lets start with welcoming our new members:
The fact that added even more weight to the event was that we had teachers like Dr. Ranee K. Banerjee, my Dad, Pankaja and Aneet participating with us.

Everyone enriched this event with their unique takes on the subject.

Ranee[1], [2], [3] entered with multiple submissions which covered the students perspective, teacher's perspective and finally a brilliant touching and eloquent short story bringing out changes in the demands of the profession.

If just that short story was not enough, Nasrajan too brought out the difference between Teachers : Aaj Kal, succinctly, aptly and eloquently by the medium of a short story.

Refreshing us with another form of literature, Richa at her poetic best, takes a middle path to explain that the difference between Teachers : Aaj Kal or rather Education : Aaj Kal lies in our subjective perceptions and not objective realities.

Shruti in her highly comprehensive post has touched many relevant issues through variety of mediums like anecdotes, 55 Fiction and factual and analytical information, all in a single post.

Avada Kedavra dealt with the various aspects about the changing trends and new developments in the profession independently and posted an amusing and apt sketch to depict information overload these days.

Prof. V.K. Grover, publishing a guest post on my blog, also did a brilliant analysis touching various aspects of the topic and gave some unknown facts in the reference to the University education.

Dhiman started with two relevant quotes bringing out the difference in general perception succinctly and concludes that its our luck that which teacher (good or bad) we happen to meet in our lifetimes irrespective of the generations.

Two quotes from Indian Pundit,'Techers then used to command respect.. Today they have to demand it' and 'Teachers are nothing but reflection of society itself' sum up his post nicely.

Sojo had a different but brilliant perspective equating teaching to just any other profession that exists and hence de-emphasises its so-called noble character to make it more professional in this competitive world.

On somewhat similar lines, Vishnu favours the commercialisation of the profession and feels that better education is directly proportional to the money you are ready to shell out.

Aneet with his witty inputs in an otherwise serious analysis has done full justice to the topic. Well, in short you can say he has done a serious witty analysis. (Hey Aneet, even I can write oxymorons:)

Ajinkya presented a humorous but apt analogy between the changing trends in Bollywood and teaching as a profession.

Sid taking side of present schooling system, further added to the humour quotient with a nice flashback mechanism to show the difference between his and his niece's teachers and schools.

Pramathesh shared some nice anecdotes about his teachers at different stages of his education and even his mother's teachers for that matter to show the change.

Rajalakshmi too shared some general anecdotes including story behind the origin of the day and nice references to our cherished Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam.

Aativas, taking a different stand talks of various people from a tribal woman to an honest policeman you meet in 'day-to-day life' (another interpretation of Aaj Kal) who teach you something good.

Mytuppence, coming from corporate background, modified the scope of the title to call the Managers as the Teachers Now while those from the college/school days as Teachers Then, sharing interesting anecdotes about some of them.

Bharathi interpreted the topic in Present and Future sense giving some apt suggestions for reforms in education leaning towards morality and change in the cultural parameters to decide wisdom, i.e. practical rather than theoretical knowledge.

Pra's was a brilliant Mahabharat's Samay Chakra meets H.G. Wells Time Machine post. She amazed us with an extensive historical analysis of the development of this profession.

Lakshmi, eloquently touched various aspects like historical development of the profession, some known people from this background, suggestions for reforms and his own teachers from the past.

Shilpa, as always has something new to offer. So here she does an exhaustive search for relevant quotes and makes dichotomic pairs out of them to create a full-length post.

What better way to deal the topic than sit down for a test. Govind treated the topic in an innovative Q/A form raising some highly relevant issues like disobedience faced by teachers of today.

Even Saimanohar talks of a situation where there is increasing pressures on teachers due to rebellious students but at the same time, according to him more friendly relationship is being fostered between them.

For Pankaja too 'Respect' is the keyword as she aptly concludes that maybe a little bit of respect from both the sides will help in bringing back the Teachers then.

Shankar in an exhaustive post straight from his heart concluded with apt words that Experience is the best teacher.

In a short and crispy post, Azad shares his 'tryst' with education. For him the problem does not lie in the teachers but the whole education system.

Pawan showed the change with an interesting introduction refering to the changing role models of the students, as the generations progress.

In a transitory stage between the student-she-was and the teacher-she-will-be, Guria is clear about one thing that its way past the time to bring back the true spirit and glory of the teachers. (You’ll definitely make a great teacher).

On the whole, there is a sort of consensus that the ethics and standards of the teaching as a profession have degraded to some extent but then at the macro level they are just the reflection of the changing priorities of the society at large.

While most insist that there is a need to look at teaching as a noble profession, there are some who feel that it should be treated just like any other profession without adding the ‘service’ tag to it.

Nonetheless, everyone agrees that there is an urgent need to revitalise the profession through better training and better monetary incentives for the teachers.

Moreover, moving beyond this general interpretation, some Blog-a-Tonics have aptly increased the scope of teachers to include within their ambit the parents, other people we meet in everyday life, our own practical experiences and above all the Mother Nature.

Now coming to the voting trends. Well, total 26 votes came in out of which one was from a non-participant. The voting was very close. Most of the participants managed a vote but two stood out and hence are sharing the award.

P.S. Richa's votes have been cancelled as she voted twice, once for Ajinkya and once for Nasrajan. Please read the rules carefully in the future.

Congratulations to Govind and Indian Pundit for winning the Blog-a-Tonic of the Month award for September, 2009 with 4 votes and 16 cheers each.

Please pass me your e-mail ids so that the badge award can be mailed to you.

All the voting comments are now visible. Click here to read them.
In case you find any discrepancy in the results, please bring it to my notice asap.

Here are two important questions for all the Blog-a-Tonics:
  • Please tell next time, should we go for a single topic or a broader category under which the Blog-a-Tonics have the freedom to take up any issue (though the category won't be that broad that every topic has exclusive scope)
  • In case of multiple entries in future, should we count the votes obtained by all the posts of the particular blog-a-tonic or look at the posts individually while deciding BATOM.
Please answer these questions in the comments section for sure.

Signing off with an elated heart,
Yours blog-a-tonically,
Vipul Grover

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Now EVERY Blog-a-Tonic can VOTE for the BATOM!

Voting is Over. BATOMS for Sep, 2009 are Govind and Indian Pundit.

Its great to see the overwhelming response to the Blog-a-Ton. It was nice to see Blog-a-Ton move across the oceans to US too. Moreover, yesterday saw the maximum number of unique visitors and total visits on my personal blog till date. If that is true for me, then must be true for many others, I believe.

Anyway lets first welcome the new Blog-a-Tonics who just joined us:
  • Aman Arora (Please provide us your Bloglink to be blogrolled)
  • Rahul (Please provide us your Bloglink to be blogrolled)
  • Amit Singh (Congrats on being our 50th member)
  • Chetan (Please provide us your Bloglink to be blogrolled)
  • Psych Babbler
  • Muralidhar
  • Anupama
The fellow Blog-a-Tonics who took part in this Blog-a-Ton are (in order of submission of links)
  1. Vipul
  2. Rajalakshmi
  3. Dhiman
  4. Ranee[1], [2], [3]
  5. Avada
  6. Indian Pundit
  7. Sojo
  8. Aneet
  9. Pramathesh
  10. Aativas (This link was not working earlier. Now, it has been corrected. So do visit Aativas' blog in case you couldn't do it earlier. Also correct the link on your posts.)
  11. Sid
  12. Pra
  13. Ajinkya
  14. Lakshmi
  15. Govind
  16. Shilpa
  17. Bharathi
  18. Shankar
  19. Mytuppence
  20. Azad
  21. Pawan
  22. Pankaja
  23. Saimanohar
  24. Guria
  25. Shruti
  26. Vishnu
  27. Nasrajan
  28. Richa
In short, 30 entries from 28 Blog-a-Tonics. I definitely require another couple of days to visit all your blogs personally:)

Here is the HTML code with the names of all the Blog-a-Tonics who participated in the Blog-a-Ton 2 with the links to their respective posts. Just copy and paste it in your post replacing the previous concluding text. Don't forget to remove your own name from it.

This time the Blog-a-Tonic of the Month (BATOM) will be decided by the number of cheers and not the number of votes.

Now what are the cheers, you must be wondering.
  • Well, this time every blog-a-tonic is allowed to vote, irrespective of the fact he/she participated or not.
  • Every one can vote for the post he/she liked the most after going through all of them, links of which have been provided to you above.
  • You can cast only 1 vote and of course you can not vote for yourself.
  • In case of multiple entries from any blogger, please mention the specific post you are voting for and not just the name of the blogger.
  • If you had participated in Blog-a-Ton, your 1 Vote = 4 Cheers

    If you had not participated but had joined us before Sep 5; then your 1 Vote = 2 Cheers

    If you have not participated and joined us on or after Sep 5, your 1 Vote = 1 Cheer
(P.S. Blog-a-Tonic is the one who is following this blog through the Google Friend Connect (or in other words Followers) widget on the sidebar.)

So, in short, a Blog-a-Tonic might get maximum votes but still not win as someone else gathers maximum Cheers.

Now coming to the other rules:
  • Voting ends at 1600 hrs on Thursday, Sep 10, 2009.
  • Post your vote in the comments section of this post.
  • In the brackets also mention the number of cheers it gets transformed into. This will make my job easier.
  • I have started moderating the comments and won’t display the voting comments till the end of this process to keep the result secret till its conclusion.
  • You might also add the reason, why you voted for a particular post to help others know what you expect as a reader. Moreover, you may also mention the other posts that you liked though you can vote for only the most liked one.
Before signing off, I'll like to share with you an interesting question Shankar raised on the conclusion of previous Blog-a-Ton that how will it be possible to go through so many posts and vote for them as the number of participants keep on increasing. Well, remember, the more you visit others' post and leave your comments there, the more probability that they will follow you back and hence might even vote for you if they find your post interesting. But remember, every blogger knows the difference between a genuine appreciative/critical comment and a comment 'just-for-the-sake-of-it'.

IMP: If any Blog-a-Tonic is interested in briefly reviewing all the posts, the way it was done the last time while declaring the winner (Click here to read it), please let me know by intimating me( asap.
Once you intimate me and get the go-ahead from my side, you can mail me the complete review 24 hours in advance of conclusion of voting. Your help will be duly acknowledged but I'll reserve the right to edit the review if required.

Finally, wrapping up this post by thanking Shilpa for helping me in marshalling the Blog-a-Ton 2 in the initial stages.

So Happy reading and voting. Cheer for your favourite post. See you all on the declaration day.

Thursday, September 3, 2009


Date for Blog-a-Ton 2
: September 5, 2009

Before I give you the details about posting, lets welcome the new Blog-a-Tonics
  • Nasrajan
  • Aditya Timbrewala (Please provide us your bloglink to be blogrolled)
  • Govind

As you already know, the topic for Blog-a-Ton 2 has been finalised as:
Teachers : Aaj Kal

Please follow these rules while publishing your post and thereafter:

  • The title of your post should be the topic itself; i.e. Teachers : Aaj Kal.
    However, you can use alternative title, Teachers : Now and Then or Teachers : Translation of Aaj Kal in your mother tongue.
  • The post should start with this text within blockquotes and with link to thisblog. Just copy the following HTML code and paste to ur post in Edit HTML mode:
  • The post should end with this text within blockquotes and with links to the comments section of this post and this blog. Just copy the following HTML code and paste to ur post in Edit HTML mode:
  • Publish the post on September 5, 2009 anytime between 0000 hrs and 2359 hrs.
  • After publishing it, do not forget to leave the link in the comments section of this post.
    Embolden the link by putting it within bold tag so that it is prominently visible or use the following code to provide direct link to your post.

  • Return on Sep 6 to vote for your favourite post. A separate notification for the same will be posted. So do not vote till then. Till then just enjoy reading the various entries, keeping in mind your favourite one.
Looking forward to great participation. Get set go!

Use the following code to provide direct link to your post in the comments section.