So now I find myself at the end of my blogging for BCM240.
Looking back over the past 9 weeks of blogging, I have learnt much about media audiences and place.
I found it much more enjoyable to compose a blog post if I could personally relate to the topic or had some kind of experience relating to it. The weeks that involved me to leave my comfort zone and blog about an unknown topic saw me undertake a very different process. Instead of starting off with my experiences of the topic, I found myself looking at other students blogs and researching interesting angles I could take. A post that stands out in my mind most is my ‘Real Life?’ – Never heard of that server’ post, in which includes details of the NBN. Before this topic I had personally never given the NBN much thought, if any! It was definitely interesting learning about the promises and the areas that are connected to it. I felt this post was overall flat, as I couldn’t add any personal experiences or anecdotes that I would usually draw upon for my blog post.
My blog layout definitely reflects my graphic design skills (which consist of editing my Myspace layout back in 2007), and doesn’t look as professional and appealing as I hoped. However I struggled with the settings and found that was the best I could achieve without spending 48 hours on just the layout. The side-bar contains a Twitter feed and categories for my blog, which is probably the most high-tech aspect you’ll be seeing on my blog. I feel I could have utilised Twitter more during the assignment, but WordPress and Twitter are pretty much the only two platforms on the entire internet that I am the least familiar with, and it doesn’t come naturally.
Throughout my posts I tried to keep paragraphs short, with no more than a few sentences in each. This is my personal style, and this reflects what I like reading when it comes to other peoples blogs. I feel large paragraphs look unappealing and are less likely to attract viewers. The same goes for additional graphics; pictures, memes, YouTube clips, you name it, are all featured throughout all of my blog posts as I feel it breaks up the writing, and adds an extra depth to the text. Additionally, the Youtube clips in particular usually help explain my points in ways that would not be possible or interesting with words, or provide extra information for those readers that want to hear more.
I also include multiple links in all of my posts, I feel hyperlinks make your reading more credible as you have research or other sources backing up your points. I prefer to have these links in-text rather than in a list at the end, so that it is obvious to the readers which reference belongs to which piece of information. There’s nothing more overwhelming than looking for a reference and scrolling down to find 239 references.
My favourite post is ‘Cookies. And not the edible kind,’ which I found really interesting researching and writing because I have assigned much thought to just how ‘tracked’ we are. I also thoroughly enjoyed writing this post as I had a personal story about my little sister looking up ‘Ferret harness’ on Gumtree and is now constantly flooded with advertisements on Facebook about ferret harnesses being sold in her area.
The same applied to one of my most recent post, ‘Media Regulations in 2014; a Reason for Panic’ in which I discuss the need for media rules and regulation, and the need for issues such as internet privacy and inappropriate viewing for children to be added to the dialogue. Having the chance to research and blog about an issue such as how the Internet has blurred the lines between acceptable and non-acceptable viewing for children is really eye opening for me, as I feel it’s never discussed. Piracy is a hot topic issue among society, but I find the topic of children having little to no Internet regulations more morally disconcerting.
Similarly with my post, ‘The Bystander and the Camera Phone‘, was quite confronting for me to research and write about, as I have never given thought to how it was actually legal be photographed without seeking permission in public places. It made me rethink my own habits, as I have taken a few ‘sneaky Snapchats’ of stranger’s doing/wearing something unusual, sleeping in a public place, or doing something of comedic value. But I had never given thought to the fact that I wouldn’t like someone taking a photo of me without my permission. I felt even more selfish when I tried to confront my public subjects and ask for their permission to use their image, and couldn’t even bring myself to ask for permission.
All in all, blogging about media, audience and place has been a blast and has opened up my writing to a whole lot of different topics that I might have never given more thought to. Although keeping up with one blog post a week and writing about the NBN has definitely been challenging at times, I’m proud of my blog and I hope I gave a few of you my readers a couple minutes of enjoyment with my posts.
Writing for an audience is definitely an invaluable skill to have, and starting up my university blog and blogging every week has inspired me to create my own fashion and beauty blog, (although I used this as an opportunity to explore Blogspot; sorry WordPress). Writing to an audience really isn’t as daunting as you think it is before you start! The biggest struggle will always be choosing a blog name that you’re stuck with for eternity.