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Posts Tagged ‘blogs’

A YouTube video relating to blogs and making money

September 18th, 2009 1 comment

I thought this was appropriate, given that we have discussed working on the internet. I also, thought it was an interesting YouTube with relation to blogging in general – the video is titled: How to Make Money From Your Blog

Categories: YouTube Tags: , , ,

The Lighter Side of Jill Walker Rettberg’s “Blogging”

September 9th, 2009 No comments

Jill Walker Rettberg’s Blogging takes us on a journey through the internet and the much used mediums, blogging and social networking.

I found the beginning chapters of this most fascinating and the most fun to read. There is a particularly humorous portion of the book in the early pages. Rettberg talks about different types of personal blogs. Then she discusses The Dullest Blog in the World. (p. 22) She quotes a portion of the blog that gives a short discussion about a pile of pencils. Rettberg says, “…[there are] hundreds of comments, showing how fascinated people are with this simple parody.” (p. 22) I must say that when I read the post she quoted I laughed out loud. I would say that it may not be that people are posting comments so much because they are fascinated, but rather, that they are entertained.

Rettberg further discusses blogs and community networks. Rettberg discusses the difference between a blog and social networks. She describes blogs as “…free-form … decentralized … connecting haphazardly to other blogs.”(p. 57) By contrast, she discusses how social networks differ due to the fact that “…social software is often centralized on a single server, like Facebook, Bebo, or MySpace.” (p. 57) I know from personal experience just how easy it is to create a blog and yet how much more is involved in joining a social network. I’ve been sent invitations to join Facebook, but found the steps to join a little annoying.

In the section where Rettberg discusses blogs as narratives she points out that while most blogs are telling the true story of someone’s life, there are some that are exposed as fiction. Rettberg points out “…sometimes blogs that are written as though they are authentic turn out to be fictional … readers respond with fury and outrage.” (p. 111) She uses Lonelygirl as one example. Since I learned about the Lonelygirl site after it was well known to be fiction, I didn’t experience outrage, I just enjoyed some of the hilarious videos.

One thing this book did for me – it encouraged me to blog. I had previous experience with a class blog in the past. That is a safe route to go. After reading this book I started a personal blog and will likely tie a few different topics together in the future through the blogroll available on wordpress.


Categories: reading response Tags: ,

The definition of literacy evolves with the blog

September 9th, 2009 1 comment

Jill Walker Rettberg does a fantastic job of following the development of “web-logs” and the expanding definition of literacy in her book, Blogging:  Digital Media and Society Series. She finds the progression of communication is directly proportional to the broadening definition of literacy, making some of the same points and references that we mentioned in class.
Rettberg uses the introduction of the written word in ancient Greece as her starting point. Plato favored oral communication for its immediate acceptance of a response or objection from the listener. Stories, theories or arguments that were written, rather than spoken, and were questioned or found to be incorrect, could not be retracted as easily (32).
We’ve come a long way since Plato’s time. Since the creation of high-speed Internet and the ever-declining cost of computers, many more people are able to become a part of the “participatory media” (1). The shift from the uni-directional mass media that Plato seems to almost have predicted forming, to participatory media, via easy-to-use technology that is in many cases mobile, has many journalists concerned about the future of news.
Rettberg does a fairly good job of remaining unbiased while portraying arguments for bloggers’ comments on current events and the reporting news, and the opposing views of media-employed journalists in pursuit of truth.
She lists three types of bloggers without structured guidelines to abide by that may convey more truthful, unfiltered angles to stories: chance witnesses, gatewatchers and opinionists. Journalists, however, check their sources and represent the companies they work for, and so, would not publish falsities to protect the credibility of both their own names, as well as company names. The bloggers refute the argument of credibility by arguing that all news is filtered and chosen by the editors. Comments are at the discretion of the editor (85).
I’m left thinking about one puissant quote by journalist Abbott Joseph Liebling that Rettberg uses to introduce both arguments, “Freedom of the press is guaranteed only to those who own one” (84). Maybe bloggers need to be respected as reporters, too, as literacy evolves to support participatory media.