A Year of Being SMUG


For some events it’s really easy to pinpoint a date. The births of all of our six children were quite memorable, for instance. But with the last one, John, his arrival was so rapid — and almost exactly at midnight — that we got to choose his birthday. We didn’t know for sure when he  made his debut, so we picked 12:01 a.m. on November 23, which enabled his mom to get three full days of recuperation in the hospital.

The birth of SMUG was less momentous and more gradual, so it’s a little more complicated to choose an official anniversary date. Though I’ve been blogging since July 30, 2006, it wasn’t until January 24 of last year that I first used the term Social Media University, Global and explained the rationale. The next day I had posts on Tuition and Financial Aid (we don’t have either), and on the 28th bestowed upon myself the title of Chancellor. After setting policies for auditing classes and applying for admission as well as attendance and grading on the 29th, I officially changed the name from Lines from Lee to SMUG on January 30.

And having previously said that I wanted to limit my blog to only things I could do without spending a single penny (just to make a point), I agonized over whether to spend the $19 for domain mapping, so that my URL would be social-media-university-global.org instead or leeaase.wordpress.com. I finally made the switch on February 20, 2008.

People who know me may say my SMUGness goes back long before last year, so picking any of these dates as the official birth of SMUG is somewhat arbitrary. January 25 would be a good choice, as it was the day I started the SMUG group in Facebook, which now has 252 members. But I guess I’m going with January 30, which is the day I went from having SMUG just be a page on my blog to being its complete identity, although the vanity URL came three weeks later.

So on Friday of this week we’ll be celebrating a year of being SMUG. It’s been great fun, and I hope you’ve learned as much as I have. If you have highlights or key observations to share with your fellow SMUGgles, I hope you’ll leave them in the comments below.

Author: Lee Aase

Husband of one, father of six, grandfather of 15. Chancellor Emeritus, SMUG. Emeritus staff of Mayo Clinic. Founder of HELPcare and Administrator for HELPcare Clinic.

One thought on “A Year of Being SMUG”

  1. Thanks for having a place that takes some that can be so overwhelming for a newbie and methodically breaking it down in manageable chunks for info to learn. SMUG has helped me quickly get up to speed! Stay warm up there!

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