Posts Tagged With: blog

The top four: time to pick favorites.

Let’s start off with Rachel’s reaction to blogs and their freedom of speech:

She addresses the different types of blog posts as well as the strong stereotypes that accompany them. I completely agree with her here:

In some situations people may have taken their “freedom of speech” a little too far.

I think this is a huge issue with the internet, especially with this “BSU Confessions” fad hitting Facebook. For right now, the negativity is minimal however, once it turns into a Burn Book it’ll lose its credibility. The same goes for anyone anywhere. Another reason why I feel Rachel did a good job covering this topic. You see, it’s not just where blogging is going popularity-wise but also how people are going to incorporate it into their day to day lives. Will this be a negative or a positive? We can only wait and see.

Next we have Jack’s Tiki-Toki timeline of the future:

I really loved how he incorporated Axel Bruns at the very end and how we will write a new book. Very clever. Also, I thought it was very interesting how freelance blogging from home. More and more people are declaring they’re self-employed so I think this is a real possibility. One of the creepiest ideas to me was the YouTube bit about identifying everyday citizens from their videos. I picture the Facebook face finder but for videos… chills. Apparently I’m a little behind because I had no idea what Twitter Bootstrap was so I had to Google it. Hmm, learn something new everyday.

Third on the list would be Joe’s interesting link-jobs in his digital artifact:

I was never familiar with the phrase “digital goldfish” so that was something new I learned. There is also the point of the evolution of technology and how blogging is so closely linked with technological innovations. As long as blogging continues to evolve to suit the online tools of the times, it’s here to stay.

Fourthly we have Matt’s timeline, also on Tiki-Toki:

Unlike Jack’s approach, where Google began filtering out the blogs with shorter posts, Matt looked at the future as Facebook turns blogging obsolete with its longer posts. The government getting involved was definitely a radical approach but, hey, it’s the future! Who knows? Maybe the next big thing will be the internet Civil Rights movement. And the part about the freelance writers turning to blogging, I can totally see that happening and its kind of scary.

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The Sunday post: (Week 6)

Alright people, let’s do this thing. I’m running a little late tonight and my excuses are worthless anyway so I won’t waste your time. I didn’t get to post a lot this week but I at least got the assignments completed!

As usual, I tried the whole lecture note approach as well as mentioning all the things that popped into my head whilst reading. My Tuesday and Wednesday posts were on chapter 18 and 19 in Uses of Blogs. The first one, titled Penguins, meth and vampires. Oh my! focused primarily on fictional blogging and throughout the post I used a lot more links than I have in my past posts.Oh, and I actually used some things I’ve experienced through Twitter… Which is weird. Maybe Prof. Morgan was right: academia now owns Twitter. Isn’t that a scary thought? As much as I’d like Twitter to go academic, I think I’ve experienced too many negative things with Twitter. To me, Twitter = workings of the devil, whatever you feel correlates with a horrible thing that should be exorcised from the internet.

Sorry, Morgan. I know I’m going off topic. So Wednesday’s post was appropriately titled How  things have changed since 2007 plus a goat. This chapter was mainly about the different genres of blogging as well as the different mediums. For instance, podcasting and videocasting. I went head to head with the author here. I had quite a few things to say about his claims that videocasting was incapable of hyperlinking. I respectfully disagreed. Personally, I really enjoyed having a valid point for once. It was a great feeling. People should do that more often.

I perused  the posts of others in the class, such as Matt’s annoyance with the amount of links on a video (I told you there were links in videos!) and Jake’s views of blogging used as a notebook.

Finally we have my own digital artifact of sorts about what I see as the future of blogging. I tried something new this week. Joe suggested I make it into a picture book. I wouldn’t mind doing this all the time. There is nothing better than writing with scented markers. It was fun tracking the history of blogs and then accelerating the now periodic use to a more extreme measure. I have very mixed views of social networking so I got to let some of that shine through.

My life is a pile of busy from now on so I just have to keep holding on by this thread. Maybe next time I’ll try these super cool 3D pens instead of scented markers.

Cheers.

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What’s next for blogging: I try to predict the future.

In The Beginning: [1980]

THERE WAS USENET! What’s that? Well, basically some guys made a world wide discussion board.

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Then we can journey through 1994-2001:

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In addition to just an “online diary,” blogs introduced entirely new tools only available through the web: permalinks, blogrolls, and trackbacks.

Then comes the politics: [2001-2004]

Now people can give live/public commentary on their favorite political happenings!

Keying up to the present: [2004-now]

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WHAT DO WE DO NOW?! WHAT’S NEXT?!

Certain questions will be answered: what makes “the perfect” blog?

Blogging will become a way to portray your personality. If you seem to be a generally likable person in your posts, more people will support you.

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Instead of petty judgments being thrown out face-to-face in direct confrontations, they will be thrown out blog-to-blog.

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Everything will be considered an experiment.

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Soon, all forms of communication will be done through the blogosphere. Instead of langage barriers, there will be coding errors. “HTML” will be used in everyday web conversation. People will be more afraid of the network crashing than the market crashing. Even worse, hashtags will be everywhere. #SpringBreak2003

Or…

Blogging will fade away like the tamagotchi you never fed.

*All information from sections In The Beginning through Keying up to the present (a.k.a. the historical sections) came from here. Thank you Wikipedia! This is why I give you money every once in a while.

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The Sunday Post (Part whatever week number we’re on)

So this week was interesting to say the least. Monday started me off blogging about something I cared about. Some friends and I started a tag project so that was pretty neat, if I must say so myself. It wasn’t a required task but I actually blogged for me and not a grade this time. It was a breath of fresh air. I tried to incorporate some of the things I’ve been learning in the class: embedding images, linking to sources, quoting outside articles, considering everything an experiment waiting to happen. Strangers really seemed to like it.

Then we got our book assignments to read through chapters 11-14 and type up a few posts. I made my first post how I would take lecture notes. I went through the text making comments here and there and highlighting important quotes i would find helpful later one. In then typed it all up in my own words. That was on chapter 11. Chapters 12 and 13 didn’t really trigger any responses from me. However, after reading chapter 14, something snapped. I’m a raging feminist at heart (maybe it’s because I have ovaries) as well as hater of those who feel dealing out judgement is entertaining. Call me a hypocrite if you want. That chapter gave me my idea for this week’s digital artifact which I worked on with Joe and Matt. Instead of making one giant post, we all found parts of chapter fourteen that interested us and then elaborated in our own ways. I touched on sexism and the blogging bourgeoisie that find it their duty to patrol our pingbacks. I talk about manhandling. You should read it.

Joe’s post was about pseudonyms. Did you know that J.K. Rowling specifically chose to have her name initialed to make her name more gender neutral? What twelve year-old boy is going to pick up a book by a Joanne Rowling?

Matt addressed the issue of ageism, however it wasn’t from the end of a young person but from the older generations. Interesting stuff. Make sure you check it out!

Also, check out this awesome work of online literature. It does a fantastic job of taking into consideration the future of blogging as well as the day to day worries of the prepubescent  learner or, in this case, lurker.

Next week is supposed to mark a change in pace so it will be interesting to see just which direction this class goes. I’ve learned how to keep up in my own way and now it’s going to mixed up all over again.

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Because I’m a woman this post will be about knitting, cooking, children, and the joys of domesticity.

Oh, wait. No it won’t. I apologize if the title deceived you but I can’t knit, I don’t have children, I’m an average cook, and I find very little joy in the domestic world. However, because I am of the female variety my blog is immediately pegged as “that” genre.

“But Devan, this is the modern age where women shouldn’t have to fall into the stereotypes of which they have been entrapped since the fall of hunting and gathering.” You’d be right. Blogging should stand as an escape from the throws of everyday archetypes, not just another foothold for patriarchy. And yet, there is still this uphill battle for female efficacy.

Let’s try and figure out what draws people to a blog. Cool formatting? Concise workflow? Pretty pictures? Debate? As Uses of Blogs puts it,

The debate about gender and blogging has therefore suffered from lack of clarity in three main areas: what counts as a blog, what counts as an online journal, and what counts as political. (155)

Apparently, us bottom-of-the-food-chain bloggers must rely on the unending wisdom of the “pundit” blog. We give them the power to look at our blogs with their ex-ray eyes and judge whether or not we deserve to be read, published, linked to, or whatever else suits their fancy. They take the phrase “It’s all about who you know” to an entirely new level. Heck, we may have never met these particular individuals and yet they hold the unyielding power to manhandle our internet private parts. They can capitalize on both our successes and failures.

by privileging filter blogs and thereby implicitly evaluating the activities of adult males as more interesting, important and/or newsworthy than those of other blog authors, public discourses about weblogs marginalize the activities of women and teen bloggers, thereby indirectly reproducing societal sexism and ageism, and misrepresenting the fundamental nature of the weblog phenomenon. (155)

I can understand that sometimes, us female-folk tend to go off on random tangents about the most mundane things. Honestly, an hour into a rant to my boyfriend about my mother I realize how much time I’ve wasted on such a completely pointless task. Yes. We drone on and on with usually no point in site, no concise argument, no bathroom breaks. However, there are times when I have some alright things to say and this is where my distaste for stereotyping “filter” blogs place women as a whole into this pit. This pit of despair.

Only the pundit overlords know where the knot in the tree is to open the secret door.

To bypass these filters, many women, in search of a more neutral pen name, have turned to pseudonyms. For more information, check out Joe’s post here.

For more information on how ageism is affected by these manhandling meanies, check out Matt’s post here.

I’m not going to pretend to enjoy politics in order to get views or garner popularity. I’m just going to blog for the sake of blogging and maybe I’ll get my own kind of viewers. It’s the internet. Who knows?

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-Isms fighting the bombastic blogger with pseudonyms.

Joe, Matt and I joined forces for this weeks digital artifact. Tomorrow we’re going to combine ideas to make the finished product. Today we’re just gathering ingredients. Here is what I’ve got so far for sources:

We were initially going to discuss some of the basics for this chapter (sexism vs. ageism) but then after we began researching, our ideas evolved. Matt strayed toward ageism, Joe took the pseudonym route, and I decided to explore “filter” blogs. Maybe it’s my deep-down dislike for those who believe themselves to be better than everyone else. Most of the time, it’s because they are, but hey, you don’t need to go rubbing it in all the time.

One quote in particular from Uses of Blogs got me started down this road.

As other researchers have argued, however, these perceptions create a hierarchy whereby the group or pundit blog– sometimes called the “filter” blog–is the authentic form against which other styles of blogging must be judged” (155)

The author then goes on to explain how none of these pundit blogs have really addressed the basis of which they go around “judging” blogs.

What these debates also typically avoid is any significant debate about what makes atopic “political,” “newsworthy,” or “important” in the first place (155)

This reminds me of something Prof. Morgan told me about my first couple of blog posts. He said I was “snarky” but there wasn’t any basis for me being “snarky” other than my own personal opinion. I didn’t have and facts to back myself up. Isn’t this a similar situation? The filter blogs are sitting there being snarky about other people’s blogs, judging them with criteria they don’t understand fully.

If you’re going to label someone’s blog as worthless you better have a rubric or something. Maybe then we can really call them “A-List” bloggers.

 

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What my pink highlighter taught me.

Chapter Eleven

Scholarly Blogging: Moving toward the Visible College

Blogging boils down to three major settings: the notebook, the coffee house, and the editorial page. The phrases themselves are rather self-explanatory; however there is one more type that seems to be a hybrid division: the scholarly blog.

A decade ago Harrison and Stephen explained why computer networking was of such interest to academics. It played to long-held ideals among scholars that had yet to be realized: “unending and inclusive scholarly conversation; collaborative inquiry limited only by mutual interests; unrestrained access to scholarly resources; independent, decentralized learning; and a timely and universally accessible system for representing, distributing, and archiving knowledge.” (118)

Scholarly blogs provide most, if not all, of these opportunities. If anything they follow the four major themes of blogging practices:

  • They rely on networked audiences.
  • They encourage conversation between readers.
  • They are generally a low-intensity activity.
  • Depending on the blog, they can portray a transparent thinking-in-process style.

Let’s talk about the three bog settings, first being “The Notebook.” Like any other diary of sorts, this type of blog allows you to jot down any ideas, quotes, dreams, ice cream flavors, or whatever else suits your fancy. It’s a way of thinking out loud without really verbalizing anything (Unless you’re like me, where you type and talk at the same time). Taken to a more professional level:

The notebooks of many scholars, from Faraday to da Vinci to Gramsci to Darwin, have opened up new realms to later researchers. While the use of such a notebook differs from field to field, in sciences  it might be argued that the ab notebook represents a clear expression of everything the scientist does. (119)

As Cory Doctorow put it, the notebook blog is like his “outboard brain.” Through links he is able to draw lines to relevancy thus making his simple lecture notes even more interesting and interactive.

Nest, we have “The Coffee House.” Although not very common in the large-scale blogosphere, The Coffee House community can still be traced through the hyperlinks recorded back and forth between them.

Many have suggested that blogging in the modern recapitulation of pamphleteering, but like blogs, the coffee houe thrived on mixing and exchanging the opinions and ideas of those from a variety of backgrounds. Like blogs, however, those with particular interests or political leanings were likely to flock to the same coffeehouse. (120)

Like interests are attracted to like interests. Hmm, seems legit.

Lastly, we have “The Opinions Page,” which, like any other Op. Ed. page in a newspaper, represents an opinion not necessarily expressed by a journalist. It represents information provided by those who wish to educate the public and “engage in public issues.” Scholarly blogging finds its foothold here. Blogs provide a forum where those communication barriers aren’t so prominent.

However, some scholars are finding it tough to distinguish work versus play, what’s personal versus what’s professional, what is appropriate versus what is way too much information.

In the end, though blogging is here to stay. At least, for a little while. It provides that bit of communication other forums may be lacking.

Exhausted Devan commentary.

Exhausted Devan commentary.

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Chugging out the Sunday post.

It seems as if it was only a week ago I was doing this exact same thing. Alas it is Sunday and alas, I care about my grade so I am back to reiterate everything I’ve done in the past seven days. Well, Monday found me partially dying from The Oak Hall Plague: Second Semester Sickness. It was great. I slept, drank tea, and chewed down DayQuil like it was a chocolate chip cookie (as in one cookie every four to six hours). I took the day off.

Tuesday I felt a wee bit better. I was still wearing the same sweatshirt and sweatpants combo from the day before but I could move and actually make decisions and think somewhat clearly once the drugs kicked in. I read through chapters nine and ten in Uses of Blogs. To this day I have no idea how I got past the few couple of lines from chapter ten.  I believe Jean Burgess did not mean anyone to understand what she was saying for the first page or so. Maybe my mind was muddled a bit, too. Who knows? The word “pedagogy” was thrown around so many times between the two chapters I started underlining it. Sentence two of Blogging to Learn, Learning to Blog:

Their emergence in Internet culture has synchronized to a large extent with trends in pedagogy toward user-centered, participatory learning in combination with the technologization of the curriculum. (105)

Can I get a translater over here?

Alright, alright. I’ll stop with the criticism. I guess I’ll start talking about what I actually learned from these couple of chapters. We’ll start with the fact that I now know exactly where Morgan got quite a bit of his ideas. The issue with commenting and discussion boards is addressed because in order to get a decent grade in the class we were forced to be checking to see if someone had commented on our posts as well as forcing us to comment on the posts of others. Soon these “assignments” became habitual for me and WordPress was the second thing I checked when opening my web browser today. It is almost sad how sucked in I can get when it comes to social networking. Who knows? Next, I might actually appreciate Twitter in all its grandeur. Or not. I hope not. God, I hope not.

Somethings that were brought up in the chapters I found rather interesting would be the genre of “research” blogging and how similar that is to what we’re doing and how I’m still trying to fit in that little bit of me that wants to be creative and go off on tangents like this one. You know, if it was up to me, I would make a blog entirely about bad math jokes. I mean “bad” as in “poorly designed and nobody will laugh” not “bad” as in “these are dirty, do not share at church.” All of my jokes will be church approved.

Back to the subject at hand: Class. But we’re not supposed to think of it as a class? But we hav assignments? I don’t know. I’m just trying to chug along at my own pace and see how it goes, that’s how I got through my Nordic skiing years and those seemed to work out more or less in my favor.

Posts for this week

Enjoy, you blogging lunatics.

A gift for your efforts.

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My digital artifact: excavating the truth.

I originally began this project with the intention of covering links and the sway they hold over any given post about any given topic. That’s when it hit me. As I scrawled through post after post of blogs such as Kevin Barbieux‘s The Homeless Guy and Google’s own blog I noticed a pattern in their usage of links in correlation to when they were stating fact versus opinion. After reading through a section titled Seeking and Reporting Truth of Uses of Blogs by Axel Bruns and Joanne Jacobs my observation was confirmed. This chapter was also comparing and contrasting bloggers versus journalists, which makes sense when discussing truth since journalists are the supposed producers of unbiased fact.

Anyway, to bring these idea fragments together is one word: truth. What is it? Where is it? How do we know if we can trust it?

Let us first jump to Barbieux. As an ex-homeless guy he has a lot to say on the topic. His blog is filled with insight and talks a lot about his personal experiences. If you happen to visit his blog you’ll also notice his extreme lack of links. Then I hit this post where he links to outside sources three times. Why did he link now instead of in the other four of five posts earlier? Because he was proving something. He mentions how he almost was one of those kids you saw on TV who brought a gun to school and took the lives of their peers. We still don’t know if this truly happened because his link leads to another one of his posts describing the event but you can really see his purpose for linking.

If we go to the next link on his post you can also see his use of support through links. He makes a few comments about Asperger’s and to prove what he’s saying is based on fact he links to an Asperger’s support site.

The third and last link on this post mentions a woman by the name of Temple Grandin. I would have had absolutely no idea who Temple Grandin was unless he had linked her name.

He becomes more believable the more sources he brings in. Just like in the book where it states:

The blog is an open forum in which information is offered, revised, extended, or refuted; the more who take part in the process, the merrier.

By linking all those places, Berieux is saying “Hey, I’m not just pulling this out of my butt. You can see here, here and here!”

Although Google can be a pretty reliable source to begin with, even their blog uses links. Take this post about the Google Science Fair.  Immediately three names are thrown into the mix, each with their own ambiguous claim to fame. Fortunately, for those who don’t know what Louis Braille invented, Google has it linked right to a page dedicated to Science Heroes. With that kind of outside source, Google garners credibility. When explaining some key information, the post mentions “a panel of distinguished international judges.” If they didn’t have a link to the names and job descriptions of these “distinguished international judges” the participants could be judged by That One Guy Who Lives On That One Street Over In That One Country. I was very disappointed to learn that Daniel Kraft (one of the  judges) was not the inventor of Kraft Macaroni and Cheese.


All in all, you can see here that without these links, both blogs’ validity would be questioned. I mean, less questioned than it would have been; you can never ask “why” too many times.

Take this commercial for the new jazzed up Internet Explorer:

Now watch this parody titled: Internet Explorer 9 Commercial (The Honest Version)

Funny, yes. True? Maybe. Coming from an individual who only used Internet Explorer all the way up until college (I am now an avid Chrome user and am not planning on returning to the dark side any time soon), I can say yes to that. So, even though the first video may be backed up by links doesn’t mean it’s true.

WHERE DO WE DRAW THE LINE?

Everyone knows Wikipedia is a program that can be edited by everyone (including the trolls) and they still use it as a reliable resource. Why? Well, if you at any time have noticed the small blue numbers usually following a particular statement of “fact” those link to where someone has found that bit of information. For example: Facial Tissues. Even they have their own “References” section. If you find references, you find a little more truth than you had before. Whether or not you choose to believe these references is up to you. When it comes to the internet you can believe anything you want to believe, even if it means believing that Beyoncé is an illuminati super witch. However, the more verifiable links in a post the chances that the fact in question is true raises significantly. Anything else I could say has already been said by this State Farm Insurance commercial:

 

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Uses of Blogs turned inside out.

Today I spent a little time reading the fine print of our class book, Uses of Blogs by Axel Bruns and Joanne Jacobs. As I started reading through the table of contents I noticed that each section wasn’t done by Bruns and Jacobs, but by a collection of individuals. I probably should have noticed this before. Ah well. We were advised to do a little digging on our authors, to see where they come from and if their input is worth taking to heart. I would read the back of my book where there are condensed biographies of the two but there is currently a giant “Used Books” sticker placed right over their job descriptions.

Image

Axel Bruns

An associate professor at Queensland University of Technology in Brisbane, Australia, Bruns came up with the term “produsage” to describe the user-led collection of internet creation happening today. He has written and co-edited several books about User-Information relationships as well as a co-founder of the academic publisher called M/C.

Joanne Jacobs

Jacobs was also an associate professor at Queensland University of Technology. She lectured about e-commerce and was the go-to woman for issues dealing with technology assessment. She was also an expert in telecommunications and media studies. Feel free to follow her on Twitter here. To be honest, although she may be a COO, she seems like a pretty regular person.

One other contributor, Jane B. Singer, has also sparked my interest. She mentions links several times throughout her chapter.

News bloggers ar transparent not only in their motive but also in their process, extensively using links to documents, sources, new articles, and other sorts of evidence to buttress their points and establish their authority. (Uses of Blogs, 28)

I sent her an e-mail asking a few questions to clear thing up for me. I want to know how links establish legitimacy and how they’ve become essential to the success of blogs and internet resources everywhere. Why can’t people simply believe anymore in the validity of information?

 

 

 

 

 

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