Excuse me if I make a sarcastic pun, but I'm rather upset with myself. Online communication is shaky if you use writing (a blog or regular article), writing (AIM or similar instant messaging), and writing (old-fashioned emailed letters) and sometimes even writing (forums and/or message boards) but to use only one of these options makes it very difficult to get a full picture of motives, personality, and skill.
On my online class having to do with the Modern Novel, we have conferences somewhat like a message board only with the instructor being a moderator and the students having obligatory replies. However, it is difficult not to repeat things as the system of organization for these forums is worse than a bravenet sci-fi fan forum and there are a good 100 posts per day to wade through as well as posting about five or six posts per week yourself.
I feel very much like slouching back to Medieval and Renaissance Lit. to comfort myself with a bunch of "therewiths" and "herebys" and maybe a "thither ye go". That atmosphere, though I have recently heard other students say very differently, is much more relaxing and easier to deal with. The teacher is stricter, but kinder, and the subject less ardently relative to the reader's interpretation.
I cannot wait to finish what I have for the day and read The Lord of the Rings until