Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Enthusiast Blog Reflection #3

Thoughts on Patricia Hearst:

I made my nom de plume into Patty Hearst. This is for anonymity reasons, but I figured I'd pick a name with mild significance. In case you were unaware, Patty Hearst is the daughter of a millionaire that was kidnapped when she was nineteen from her apartment in California by the Symbionese Liberation army. They tried to swap her for their imprisoned members, but when that failed, they forced her father to feed the hungry in the Bay Area. Supposedly, she was brainwashed in the most brutal of fashions until she took the name Talia and joined their movement wholeheartedly.
Patty said that she just agreed with everything that was said to her until she started believing it herself.
I have taken Patty's name as my nom de plume as a reminder that I never want to tow the party line so far that I believe it myself. I demand to keep my own will and express that in the form of blogging.

Enthusiast Blog Reflection #2

The second round of peer review was more helpful. It was pointed out to me that it would be a foolish career move to flaunt the shortfalls of my employer on this vast, great internet. I agree and am disappointed in my own short-sightedness.

To amend my blog I have instituted a policy of anonymity. I have changed the school name to "Highlands College" which is the home of the Climbing Goats. The similarity University of Rhode Island and the Rams is not coincidental but hopefully not apparent. I will also cease to use any allusions to URI buildings or employees without pseudonyms.

To further my blog's aesthetic appeal I will try and add more pictures (besides the school logo I created for the bottom) and find out if there is anyway to spice up the sidebar. Also, I have added a poll but have been forced to remove the link to R.A. applications online (due to anonymity concerns). I am sure there are more creative ways to make my blog nicer, and I will continue to experiment.

Enthusiast Blog Reflection #1

So my first reflection is further in hindsight than I would have originally liked. I will reflect on my original blog critiques that I have since edited.

I was told that both that the layout of my blog was aesthetically pleasing and too dark for my subject matter. I chose to listen to parts of each critique. I have kept my original layout but lightened the color scheme. This way I can cater to my own needs of clean lines and clear division of sections and remove the sinister undertone that the black background creates.

I was also told that my personality may have come across a bit heavy-handed. I can see how that is so, between the swearing and blatant generalizations, I may have alienated quite a few audiences. At first, I was perfectly alright with this, but upon the realization that the internet is accessible to all, I have decided to lighten up on the profanity. Maybe not so much on the generalizations and sarcasm, though, because I would like my particular brand of humor to be at least mildly apparent.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Listen Up!

Why am I a credible source? Probably because there is no one that could tell you more about being an R.A. than an actual R.A.. Other than that, I expect to reference common incidences as well as wild ones, the more general of incidences are things that regular students can relate to (or have experienced themselves) which will make them trust me as a source. Once you can identify with a couple things someone is saying, you usually find yourself trusting the rest of their claims.

Since my intended audience is college students, another reason my they will trust me is because we are peers. The natural inclination of students is to take a professor's knowledge at face value in class, completely disregard it outside of class, and forget both in no time. But with peers there isn't such harsh rules, usually the code is "true until proven false", so I don't expect credibility but I will most likely give it.

Lastly, who in college even notices credibility? Um hi, Wikipedia is the life's blood of 80 percent of papers written here at URI. I think I'm good.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Decided: Life as an R.A.

I have decided to do my blog on being an R.A. This is a topic that is easy for me to write about because it basically defines my life at school. There will constantly be new happenings for me to blog about, and if I can manage to stay within the confidentiality rules, I can hopefully keep my job as well.

I would attempt to attract a college audience, since most have at one point lived on campus (thus with an R.A.). My style will be sarcastic humor because that is what I am most comfortable with and also the preferred humor of the college student body.

Potential Titles:
-True Life: I am R.A.
-Fuck! It's the R.A.!
-Secret Life of a URI R.A.

Potential Posts:
-any time I bust up a party
-horrible HRL bureaucracy
-best excuses ever given

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Response to Stefanac

The Stefanac article was helpful in quite a few ways. First, it provided a great example. To someone who has extremely limited experience with blogging, the section on Mr. Jalopy was insightful. It let you into an experienced blogger's viewpoint, showing both his dedication and passion. It was helpful in other ways because it showed that blogging wasn't just lazy journalism, but more along the lines of an extreme hobby.
Another thing the Stefanac article was helpful with was providing tips into blogging. The main message I gained from the tips provided was moderation. Posts shouldnt be too long, nor too short. Language shouldn't be boring, but just the right amount of informal. Claims made on the blog shouldn't be outrageous, but they don't have to be thoroughly researched either. Everything in moderation.
All in all I feel the article was extremely heplful for beginners.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Funneling my blog's focus

Here are some ideas I've brainstormed for a more focused content on my blog:

1. Social Stigma Oddities - basic human behaviors you might observe everyday that are unexplainable but completely acceptable

2. Gossip Girl: URI Women's Rugby Style - get the insider action of one of the weirdest teams I've ever played for

3. Life as an R.A. (and R.A. related subjects) - learn how it feels to be the most hated (but useful) resource on campus

4. Kelly's Best Seller List- books I've willingly read, books I've been forced to read, what's hot, and what to steer clear of. A blog devoted to helping you avoid pitfalls like Great Expectations

5. What's the opposite of Ben Stein? Oh, my money strategies - Follow a college student through common monetary decisions, the good, the bad, and the illegal

Blogging Experience

I have no blogging experience to speak of. I honestly haven't even read a blog before this class. Their unpredictable nature and lack of credibility did not have any appeal to me. On the subject of micro-blogging sites, such as Twitter, I have little experience there either.
The possibility of hyper-exposure is rather daunting and made me hesitant to put private thoughts and feelings on this great, vast internet. I suppose this class will be the push I needed to dabble in the art of the online diary.

Response to Rebecca Blood

I found Ms. Blood's in-depth history of the origin of blogging interesting. Today, the phenomena of blogging is so widespread, it is simply accepted as having always been. But in truth, Blood revealed that blogging, or web logging, was a rarity that burst onto the scene with surprising gusto. The transformation from 10 bloggers to 10's of hundreds of bloggers happened in only a few short months.
The view of blogging as self-expression was not a new concept to me. However, Ms. Blood's interpretation of blogging as a deeper method of learning and self-discovery was compelling. She presented blogging as a way to develop critical thinking and learn to form of opinions. The notion of tomorrow's activists cutting their teeth on their social opinions today was fairly intriguing.
In contrast, blogging is, in some ways, a dicey subject. While the majority of people might be sharing their opinions or a love that they've developed, it all must be taken with a grain of salt. The lack of boundaries that allows for such free thinking that is the mainstay of blogging also allows for absolute nonsense to go unchecked. All and all, I feel that the positives of blogging outweigh the negative consequences that might occur. I hope I enjoy the foray into the world of web logging as so many others have seemed to.

Monday, September 14, 2009

What is Writing?

Writing is a form of communication that has evolved through time. Originally writing was nothing more than pictures on cave walls. Throughout history, writing has become more diverse and more complicated.
Today writing is an essential part of society. In past years, you could be a productive member of the community and be illiterate, that is not the case now. Many consider writing a form of expression, while others see it purely as a way to catalog data. Whatever writing is, though, it is undeniable that is essential to everyone's lives today.