Running the Gamuts of Blogging: Digital Media Class Readings for Week 1

Digital Media Class Readings:

Fletcher, Stephen J. “A View to a View to Hugh: Reflections On the Creation of a Processing Blog.” A Different Kind of Web (unknown): 22-32.

Lovink, Geert. Zero Comments: Blogging and Critical Internet Culture. New York: Routledge, 2008.

Massanari, Adrienne L., and Meghan Dougherty. “Best Practices For Bloggers.” Center for Digital Ethics and Policy.http://digitalethics.org/resources/best-practices-for-bloggers/ (accessed January 21, 2012).

Fletcher’s article was informative and positive. The article was too-close-to-home as I know the one of the subjects of it, having been through part of my undergrad school time with her, and hearing about how “they were making an article about [the experience].” At the time, I was a little jealous. Now, I am glad to have known her when… and to know that she is off doing other things. The article and the process taken within it are good practices for showing how blogging from personal diary entries evolves to tracking processes in the information industry by respected institutions. A blog is more than tracking a summary. It is a work credential.

Lovink’s introductory article on Web 2.0 was wise. His article on “blogging as nihilist activity” left me listening to his arguments at about the same rate as the teacher of Charlie Brown fame. I am sure that he knows much more on the subject than I do, but this chapter felt over-indulgent in its negative viewpoint and pontificating in the same article. Lovink uses diverse source materials from different continents and I enjoyed his use of different culture’s experiences with the World Wide Web. However, in his quest to provide templates and examples of his highlighted points, he displays the mentioned “snarkiness of blog writing” within his own article. The article could cross-reference itself.

The best and most useful article was from Loyola (Massanari and Dougherty) and dealt with basic blogging techniques and attributes. In a quest to find a positive introduction to the formal stylistic merits of blog writing, this was the best article read. I found the applications and possibilities of blog writing a good exercise for processing work in Fletcher, while I understand that most people simply blog for their own use according to Lovink. I will agree with this sentiment in that I do not expect my blog to act a cash cow or to change mass audience opinions. I am not an “A-list” blogger or famous, and I am fine with that.

My first intention when setting up the blog was having content to link to from my newly established Twitter account as of a few months ago. The primary focus was giving tips on genealogical problems, and without self-generation of questions, or another party with a question, that idea did not go far. I am definitely not against giving advice of that nature. However, the current purpose of the blog is to put forth thoughts about views on where history is now, what I am learning at school (both schools), and to have an outlet for self-expression. The blog also serves a dual purpose being a place for posting of class assignments and development of the needs of a Digital Media class.

Digital Media class applications:

During a two-part final last semester where I did not have to present one of the days, I spent that time unobstructed in thoughts and writing down notes. An idea for an open-source geo-coded multi-layered historical map came to mind. The software that I want to use to get this to happen is available as of searching on Monday night. The same night of searching, I conversed with my Dad, and he said that the concept is leading edge and that I should start with a website first and then work from there. He was cautious about how I would do it given my lack of programming background. To me, that does not matter. Either I figure out a way of doing it myself with guidance and direction from the people who do, or else I still figure it out without direction. I am of the opinion that anyone can learn how to do something given the time and patience. I do not have extreme quantities of either quality, but I have determination to see this concept to completion. Determination is something that gets a person through anything, with the help of Deity. I am busy, but there is no exact timetable and I can’t get this out of my head no matter what else I do. I’m sold and in love with a concept that needs to happen and until I can demo it for someone else, I can’t and don’t want to get rid of the thought process. Here’s to a combination class blog, writing on history as a diverse field, and other varied blog applications.

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