Monday, April 29, 2013

Final New Media Thoughts

This blog has been a great tool for me in learning how to write and consume new media, though it is only one of several different mediums I experimented with throughout the course of this semester. Particularly durring the first section of this class, this blog was a point to come back to as we moved through different new media platforms. I had or created accounts on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and MySpace and worked with them for this class, but Blogger was something that I used consistently and frequently throughout this class. It was great to be able to link to and from Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube with the blog as I wrote about the ways they shape new media.

By using both this blog and the class wiki to record thoughts and information related to class, I'm able to compare the advantages of both in a classroom format like this one. I preferred the blog durring the first half of the class while we discussed Levinson's book, and I preferred the wiki while we discussed Jenkins' book. Each medium had advantages for the type of writing I was doing. Levinson's book discussed areas of new "new" media that I was already familiar with, and most of my writing detailed my own experiences with things like Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, ect. The blog format allowed me to structure my reflections  based on what those experiences were and seemed more appropriate for writing largely about myself and my thoughts. I still referenced Levinson frequently, but I had more personal input to add. For Jenkins' book, I had less experience with the topics he explores. While he uses some examples I am familiar with, like Harry Potter, Convergence Point focuses much more on critical analysis about how new media functions in society. When I wrote about his book, I focused on the points he brings up in the text to support his conclusions. The class wiki was a very good illustration of collective intelligence, a concept he discusses in depth. Having different students do closer readings of the text and write about them gave the entire class more insight into the chapter. Writing about American Idol on the wiki was different than what I would have written in a blog post about American Idol. With the wiki, I wrote in a way that presented Jenkins' concepts as clearly and accurately as I could, so my classmates could have a better understanding. The tone was more formal  for an academic audience. On the blog, I focused more on creativity, personality, and reader interest. For me, the blog was a better way to explore my own ideas, and the wiki was a better way to dig deeper on the authors' ideas.

I enjoyed and preferred writing for the blog, and I thought I made good use of it throughout the course of the semester. I published posts for all of the assigned prompts, and I wrote a couple additional posts related to new media and class discussion. I also experimented with personal blogging when we were away for Spring Break. I'd never considered doing a personal blog, but I found that when I have ideas to write about, whether class prompts or travel experiences, it is actually very easy to do.

Overall, I really enjoyed this blog and this class.
Peace out, girl scouts!

Sunday, April 28, 2013

The World of Harry Potter

We didn't get to the chapter about Harry Potter in our English for New Media class discussions, but the Harry Potter universe is the fictional world that I am most familiar with. In class, we looked at the ways stories like Star Wars, Star Trek, and the Matrix expanded beyond their original medium into huge trans-media stories built by fans or the stories' producers. Since we didn't get a change to look at the Harry Potter word, I want to examine some of the different stories and mediums I know of as a fan of the book series.

  • The Harry Potter world starts with J.K. Rowling, and everyone is aware of the overwhelmingly popular seven-novel series. In addition, Rowling has written three short companion books and one short story prequel, all for charity.
  • Based on the seven books, Warner Brothers created an eight film adaption of the series, with significant input from Rowling.
  • At Universal Studio's Island of Adventure, The Wizarding World of Harry Potter recreates settings based on the novels and films. Both the film producers and Rowling were involved in creating a world that was consistant with the books and movies.
  • Fans have created a music genre called Wizard Rock where artists preform only songs based on the Harry Potter universe. At one point, I owned CDs by the bands "Harry and the Potters" and "Draco and the Malfoys."

I realize this list only skims the surface of what is available to Harry Potter fans and what has been created by them. I only included things that I had personal experience with as a Harry Potter fan. I know there are countless websites devoted to Harry Potter fandom and fanfiction. When I was growing up, I wasn't very aware or interested in any of that, but I did love dressing up for the book and movie premiers, and I was able to go to Harry Potter world durring my senior spring break.

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Live From the TC: My first podcast

Check out (or don't) this very embarrassing St. Patricks Day podcast by me and my friend. It sounds really rough, but I promise we actually did this take quite a few times. Hearing our voices makes us giggle too much. 

If anyone knows how to actually upload the file to the blog instead of linking it, I would really appreciate some help.

Monday, March 18, 2013

Paper Is Not Dead

For everyone who is holding out on the paperless revolution, this video is for you. My dad sent me this yesterday, and I think he did find the one area where real paper has the advantage over anything else.

Check out the video on vimeo.

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Smaller Potatoes

In class today we are talking about some of the less popular new new media platforms. Levinson calls these sites "smaller potatoes" and includes Myspace, Reddit, Digg, and Second Life, as well as podcasts in the category. This blog posts is basically just my responses to class discussion questions about those sites.

What is your experience with Myspace?
When Myspace was popular, I was young enough that my parents regulated my computer access. They wouldn't let me have a Myspace account. I didn't know why, but I wasn't that interested anyway. I think that they probably saw news stories about the darker side of Myspace and didn't want me online for safety reasons. I didn't know about any of those things at the time. By the time I started using social media, Myspace had lost popularity and I just joined Facebook.

Any "cyberbullying" stories you are aware of?
I don't know that anything I see in my News Feed would be considered "cyberbullying." I went to a tiny school where making fun of our classmates was really common because we knew each other so well. Occasionally I have seen people post comments on Facebook that have gone to far. Picking on people in person when they are in on the joke is very different from typing a similar comment online where people can't hear the humor and don't know the relationship between the two parties.

What is your take on the Lori Drew/Meghan Meier story? Especially the result?
No doubt, Lori Drew is a really terrible person. That said, I don't think she should be held legally responsible for Meghan Meier's suicide. It is within a person's rights to create fictional identities online and it is within his rights to say something mean to someone when he is conversing with them. Drew did not appear to have a plan to cause a suicide, and those same words said to another person in a similar situation would likely not cause such an extreem response. I agree with the court's decision, but I hope that Drew feels the weight of what her actions did. I wish more parents would monitor what their children are doing online or make sure their children are mature enough to deal with strangers trying to form relationships with them online.

Levinson notes that the Truth on Earth band provided some "medicine" for "cyberbullying" on the internet. What's your take on that?
I think Levinson's argument is very week there. "Cyberbullying" and the song he mentioned may be linked by subject, but I don't see the song functioning as "medicine." For it to be medicine, the song would need to be functioning in a way that was impacting the same people affected by the bullying, and from what I can tell, the song had a very limited impact. The only thing the example illustrated is that the internet can present both problems and responses to those problems. It did not show a solution.

Are you aware of any stories of musical success on Myspace? Check to see whether some of your favorite bands have Myspace accounts. Choose one a check some other sites for their presence there. 
I listen almost exclusively to country music, and as far as I know, Myspace hasn't launched any major county stars. I looked up my favorite country artist, Eric Church, on the site and saw that he had a profile with a some songs. There wasn't much to it. I often listen to my Eric Church playlist on Pandora, but I don't know of any other popular music sites he can be found on. He's a more old-fashioned performer, and I'm not surprised that he doesn't have a large new new media presence.

Describe your use of Digg?
Non-existant. Why bother?

Same answer.

Any spare minute! I pin lots of things I never get around to trying offline.

How much social media contact did you have with the election of 2012?
I think everyone on Facebook can agree that the number of political posts last November came close to ruining the site for the weeks leading up to the election. I once browsed the Facebook page of the Presidential candidate I supported, but the comments on it were so hostile that I was turned off. I would "like" political statuses that I thought were well articulated, and I sent out one tweet after I voted ("Voted early. America's Comeback Team!"). Everything else I looked at about the election came from print, TV, and online news platforms.

Finally, have you ever used Second Life? Podcasting?
I have never used Second Life. It doesn't really appeal to me. I have listened to podcasts from iTunes by speakers that I like. I haven't heard any in at least a year though.

Saturday, March 9, 2013

Books and Monuments

Library of Congress
Today is a very old media day. I finally got to visit the Library of Congress, but I'll admit I was a little disappointed at first. Apparently they don't just let random people come in off the street and smell their favorite books, which, naturally, was my plan for the morning. The books are separated from the public viewing area, but after I overcame my initial disappointment and started looking around, the Library of Congress is still one of my trip highlights. It's the most beautiful building I've seen here, and I was able to see the giant reading room through glass dividers. There was also an interesting exhibit about Thomas Jefferson's library. I didn't realize that his personal library was the basis for the Library of Congress collection after the first one burned down. The exhibit recreated his personal library. I couldn't open (or smell) the books because they were behind glass, but at that point I was thrilled just to see some books, especially ones that old.
Lincoln Memorial
After the library I met up with my family, and we walked around the Mall together. We started from the Washington Monument and worked our way through WWII, Lincoln (my favorite), Korean War, and Roosevelt. I would have liked to have made it all the way to the Jefferson Memorial on the water, but I saw his library and that will have to be enough for today.

Tonight I'm making the sacrifice and going to watch the Wizards/Bobcats game with my brother at the Verizon Center instead of finding Georgetown Cupcakes with the rest of our group. Yet, the more I think about it, if we find a Chipotle before the game, I'll probably come out with a much better night. Laters!
And the game ended up being a trip highlight...

Friday, March 8, 2013

The day I ate the world's best hamburger and also did other stuff

Guess who's back at Starbucks writing away? This girl! Confession: this is actually my 3rd (!) trip to Starbucks today. I'm guessing that's the only thing keeping me up wandering around instead of passed out in our suite like the rest of my weary family. We've been walking all around DC today.

Holocaust Museum
This morning we walked down to the Holocaust Museum and spent a few hours going through the main exhibit. It was by far the most well-done museum exhibit I've been through and a very moving experience. As I was passing through, the exhibit had all kinds of objects and recreations, print, audio, and video media, but the most touching element for me was a short booklet put together from survivors' stories. The museum set out about ten copies in a small glass room set off from the concentration camp section. Maybe it's just my bias for reading, but hearing their stories in their own words really brought the history to life. Everyone told us the Holocaust Museum was the one museum not to miss, and I'd give the same advice to anyone coming out this way.
DeAnn impressed with my appetite
After the museum, we took a break for lunch at the Hard Rock next to Ford's Theater. I don't want to brag, but I did finish an entire 10 oz. burger. I hate for this to overshadow the rest of the trip, but the concept of putting ranch AND guacamole, my two favorite things, on a hamburger is, in two words, Life Changing!
Lincoln Museum

After lunch we hit Ford's Theater. The basement now houses a small museum about Lincoln's life and the Civil War. I was especially interested after the movie Lincoln revived my interest in the President. (If you haven't seen the movie, go! Lincoln is such an interesting character, and the movie is well done in every way.) Across the street from Ford's Theater, you can walk through the house were Lincoln died. It's not as interesting, but there are a few more exhibits there about his assassination and legacy. My favorite element is a three level tower of works written about Lincoln.
Alexandria waterfront

Tonight, I'm looking forward to taking the Metro to Alexandria and walking down to the waterfront. Spring break is going way to fast already, so I better get moving. Laters!

Thursday, March 7, 2013

First Impressions

Me and my siblings at the American History Museum
Hey all! Greetings from Washington, or more specifically from Starbucks, where I am finally inhaling my afternoon latte. It's been a busy few days for me as I finally made it here and started exploring. We flew in yesterday under a winter snow emergency, and the government was officially shut down (thanks Obama!). That didn't stop us from walking a mile through the "blizzard" to the American History Museum. The blizzard was actually just some slushy light rain, and the museum was worth the trip. I thought maybe I could stretch to find something new new media related at the museum, but I unfortunately didn't come up with anything. I am trying! I didn't go through every exhibit, but I did spend quite a bit of time exploring the "Americans at War" exhibit. To me that is the most interesting, especially from WWI and on.
That was my main outing yesterday. My first priority was tracking down a Chipotle, and we finished off an early night by eating Ben and Jerry's and watching Forrest Gump on TV. Not too crazy, but I did get up at 3 am.

My family with John Thune
Today was a "work day" for us. My dad is here for the American Chiropractic Association conference and on today's agenda was meeting with our South Dakota congressmen about legislation affecting chiropractors. This morning we had appointments with Senator Thune's and Representative Noem's offices, and with Senator Johnson's this afternoon. If you don't know this about me, I'm a big fan of John Thune, and I've been obnoxiously excited about the possibility of meeting with and (dare I hope) getting a picture with him. Knowing that, you can understand my distress when he had to be on the floor while the chiropractors talked to one of his aids. Devastated. UNTILL, after our meeting had ended and we ran into him in the hallway (: He showed us his office, took a picture, chatted about basketball, and overall just made my day.
Since I can't top that, it will probably be a pretty chill night. Laters!

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Blogging Spring Break

This will be my first time blogging just for fun, and if you are just checking in for a class related post, you might be out of luck. I'm heading to Washington DC for a spring break trip, and I want to try blogging through it. I'll try to throw in some new media references, but mostly I just want to see if I like blogging about my own life, thoughts, experiences, and what not. I won't bore you with tales from the airport, because its bad enough to live through it, nobody should have to read about it. Hope you all are enjoying your "spring" breaks. Stay tuned for stories from Washington when/if I ever get out of here.

My family and I at the airport

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Why New New Media?

I posted some notes from our New New Media textbook on our class wiki about what new new media actually is. In case someone decides to vandalize my page and delete all the notes or you just don't want to go to the site to figure out what I'm talking about with new new media, here is a quick overview:

Old Media, New Media, and New New Media

Old Media

  • Controlled by a gatekeepers (editors/producers)
  • Audiences can receive and consume information, but not publish it
  • Examples:
    • Printing press
    • Radio
    • Television

New Media

  • Still works with publishers rather than consumers
  • Easier for users to publish information than old media
  • Examples:
    • New York Times online
    • Amazon
    • Twitter

New New Media

  • Producer and consumer can be the same person
  • Anyone can create
  • Examples
    • Facebook
    • Twitter
    • YouTube
    • Google +
    • Wikipedia
    • Blogs

New Media v Social Media

  • Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, ect. are frequently termed "social media"
  • There are also social aspects of new media, and even old media
  • A consumer acting as a producer does not necessarily need to be social
  • New New Media is not distinguished by the social component

Guiding Principals of New New Media

  • Every consumer is a producer
    • Author has powers of a traditional publisher
  • You get what you don't pay for
    • Always free to to the consumer and sometimes the producer
    • This is why Amazon and iTunes are not new new media
  • Competitive and mutually catalytic
    • Sites compete with another but also work to benefit each other
    • Many links between sites
  • More than search engines and email
    • Email, search engines, and PayPal help support new new media but are not new new media
    • Cannot be fundamentally created or tailored by users
  • New new media ultimately beyond the user's control
    • New new media requires platforms that are beyond user/consumer control
    • We notices this when the medium interface changes without our control
    • New new media sites can disappear overnight

Friday, February 15, 2013


The first time I was exposed to YouTube, I was in middle school, and I hated it! When I was with my friends, we spent way too many hours watching stupid, (supposedly) funny YouTube videos that I just wasn't a fan of. It has only been in the last year that I have started using YouTube for entertainment. I follow two channels, and those are about all I watch on the site. The first one I started following is Jenna Marbles, and just recently I started following Crash Course. Jenna Marbles in an internet vloger who posts funny videos every Wednesday. It's not very intelligent entertainment, but I feel like she just gets what it is to be a college girl haha. All of my girlfriends watch her, and we often quote her videos to each other. Crash Course is a channel produced by John Green, one of my favorite authors. He is very active in social media, especially Twitter and YouTube, and after gaining huge popularity through a weekly YouTube vlog with his brother, they decided to start the channel Crash Course. The videos are just short lessons on different academic topics (World History, Chemistry, US Literature). I've only been watching the literature ones, but they are nice refreshers on some of my favorite books. Other than those two channels, that's it for me. I don't waste too much of my time on YouTube.

Wednesday, February 13, 2013


Twitter and I just had our one year anniversary, so I guess now is a good time to step back and evaluate our relationship. In the last year, I've posted or retweeted 257 tweets, so that averages out to less than one tweet a day. I go through phases where I use it more, but I also often forget to tweet for a week or so. Even when I don't tweet, I usually check twitter every day on my phone or while I'm sitting in class. I follow 99 people right now and have 67 followers. Most of the people that I follow are people I know. I'm not very interested in following celebrities, but there are maybe two or three on my following list. I'm mostly just interested in what my friends are doing, and if more of my close friends were on Twitter, I think I would use it more. If you aren't on Twitter, here is what my page looks like.

My following page. I think everyone in this screenshot is a classmate for ENM . Welcome to Twitter guys :) 

My followers. I'm particularly honored that my little brother thought I was worth following again. 

Friday, February 8, 2013

Shout Outs

After taking some time to browse through the blogs of my classmates, I feel the need to step it up on this blog to be in the game. There are some really neat things going on with these blogs. Check out the links on the right to see for yourself. There are some posts that we all have in common - assignments given out for class. Those can be interesting to compare our different uses of new new media, but the ones that interest me the most are the extra posts that people are putting up. Bry posted a Youtube book trailer for Miss Peregrines Home for Peculiar Children which I thought was a great link between old media and new new media (for those of us who still love paper books). Check out her post here. Another post I enjoyed reading was Chelsea's superbowl coverage. She talked about new new media, but she also talked about her superbowl experience and shared a funny picture. Here is a link to her post. I'm taking notes about what makes their blogs more interesting than mine, and my conclusion in that I need to be looking for and posting more cool new new media related information about things I am interested in or things I do. I guess I better get working on that now.

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Looking at Local Blogs

This blog probably won't reach an audience far beyond this class because the posts on it aren't really relevant beyond our class discussions, so what kinds of blogs become popular, particularly in areas like Madison? As a class, we have been looking at several blogs from the community and how they attract their audience. Each of these blogs has different types of posts to suit their different purposes. The Madville Times blog is the type of blog that comes to mind when I think about traditional blogging. The blog covers current events with a clear bias and opinion and encourages comment discussion. A blog like that is different from a blog like Cassie Edward's personal blog where she promotes her artwork. While the first functions as medium for a writer to earn money from advertisements and get his opinion out there, this second blog is a way for an artist to promote a career in art while using the blog simply as a tool. The blog is a great way to show ones art because it allows for both large pictures and text in a way that is not crammed. The Madison Art's Council also has a blog, but rather than posting information or opinions about art and artists, the blog mostly exists to inform community members about events that they sponsor. Again, the blog format works well because it is an attractive way to display pictures and text and to reach anyone who might be interested. There is no right way to use a blog, and many individuals, businesses or organizations can use blogging as a promotional tool.

Sunday, February 3, 2013

English for New Media Video

For class I was assigned to create a short video displaying the text "English for New Media" that would convey what that area of study is. I don't have a lot of video making skills, but I wanted to show how English for New Media is used around the internet. I chose to focus on my blog, Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube accounts and illustrate how one video post (the text English for New Media) can be shared from site to site.

The background music is from the song "BomBom (feat. The Teaching)" by Macklemore and Ryan Lewis.

Friday, February 1, 2013

On the Runway Link

I didn't realize that the New York Times hosts a wide variety of blogs on their website. I skipped through all the important topics (polotics, business, technology, ect.) and went straight to the culture, style, and leisure blogs. I particularly enjoyed a blog called On The Runway and their article recapping the red carpet from last weekend's SAG Awards. Check it out if you're into that kind of thing.

NY TImes On The Runway covers the SAG Awards

Blog Analysis

Here's a look at how I've been using my blog so far:

  • Number of posts: 5
  • Topics:
    • Welcome post
    • New new media
    • Facebook
    • Twitter
    • Blogs
    • Pinterest
    • Goodreads
    • Hardware
  • Links: 
    • Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Goodreads
    • Other classmates' blogs
  • Template changes: 0
  • Widgets: 
    • Blog Archive
    • Blog List
    • About Me
    • Classmates links
  • Comments: No comments yet, but I have set it to allow anybody to comment without moderation. I have not commented on any blogs.
Traffic stats for this blog

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

A Blog on Blogging

I just finished up a post on another blog, so hopefully that will get the wheels turning for a blog on blogging. My experience with blogging is still limited at this point. I started my first blog with my two best friends less than a month ago and this blog only a few weeks ago. My expectation prior to starting any blog was that I would struggle to find anything to write about worth publishing to the internet at large, and that expectation has been mostly confirmed. What has surprised me is that it isn't necessarily a problem. I see now that a blog does not necessarily have to be writing for a mass audience. Both of the blogs I am writing for now have very specific audiences for a very specific purpose.
This blog exists as a way to share ideas on English for New Media with my classmates and professor. I don't expect that blog readers all over the internet care about how I use Facebook or whether I own a digital camera or not. I'm not writing to gain a mass following. I'm writing to share ideas and perspectives with my classmates.
Similarly, in my blog with my two friends, I'm only writing for them. Anybody else who stumbles onto our page will probably not think our inside jokes or stories about our days are very entertaining. The blog is just a medium for us to write overly long messages to each other or post videos and pictures of ourselves that we wouldn't want to publish on Facebook.
Right now, I have no interest in a personal blog. I don't really need to share my daily thoughts with the whole world, but when I start teaching, I do think I would like to start one. I'd like to share ideas for teaching English with other teachers, but again, that type of blog would have a specific purpose and audience. 

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Facebook Rules

I love Facebook. I really do. I'm one of those people who has it open whenever I'm working on the computer (a good portion of the day for college students) and brings it up on my phone whenever I'm waiting or bored. I love catching up on news from friends and family, both from the wall posts and pictures or from private messages. That said, the way some people use Facebook doesn't make sense to me and has actually really started to annoy me. The following is a list of my personal pet peeves on Facebook:

1. If you send someone a "friend request" on Facebook, by definition, shouldn't that person at least be someone you know? If you never have and never will talk to a person in the real world, why do you want to see what they post online? For me, Facebook is a place to keep in touch with the people I know, not try to know more about people I don't.

2. Facebook games... I actually just hate games in general, so this one is only partially a Facebook complaint. Just stop sending game and app requests. If people want to play, they'll join.

3. Why are Pinterest and Instagram activities filling up my news feed? Let's keep those accounts separate so I have something to look at when I go on Instagram and Pinterest. Facebook doesn't need to combine every single social media avenue into one site, but it seems that's where it's headed.

4. For me, Facebook is a place for entertainment. It doesn't sit well with me when people post about the death of a loved one, a complicated religious question, or a provocative political post and it shows up between a joke someone shared and pictures from a weekend party. I think we need to keep the more serious topics off Facebook and give them the respect of personal conversations rather than mass posts.

5. In life, we don't have as much control over how people see us as we do online. If we blurt something out in a face to face conversation, we can't take it back. When we say something in a Facebook post comment, we first have a buffer by having to type it out and hit send, and then we have the option to delete it after it's been posted. If someone sees us making a bad decision, we can't go back and change what they saw, but we can refrain from putting a picture of it up Facebook for the whole world to see. On Facebook, you controle what goes up and stays up on your wall, so put your best face forward! Keep it clean for the parents, teachers, and employers who might access it, but also keep it un-annoying for your friends. If you have a terrible life, telling everyone just how terrible it is probably will not help it become less terrible.

[Disclaimer: These are just personal opinions on Facebook, and if you're my friend and do these things, I still love you, and it doesn't actually bother me that much anyway, and now that you mention it, people on Facebook who complain about Facebook are actually another thing that annoys me, so I'm going to try to not be one of those people, starting right now.]

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Go-Go Gadget

A brief history lesson: there was once a dark age of electronic media before Netflix, iTunes, and Xbox Live. I grew up in those days and used hardware like CD players, VHS players, and film cameras. These days, I've digitalized my music, video, and picture devices and added a few gaming systems as well. Here's a comprehensive list of all the hardware I've used to play or create electronic media. The gadgets in italics are the onces I either threw out, broke, or have placed in a drawer for indefinite storage.

  • VHS
  • DVD
  • Bluray
  • Tape/CD combo player
  • Portable tape player
  • Portable CD player
  • iPod Nano
    • 1st Generation
    • 2nd Generation
    • 4th Generation
    • 7th Generation
  • iPod/CD combo player
  • Gameboy Advance
  • Gameboy Advance SP
  • Playstation 2
  • Xbox 360
  • Polaroid
  • Film camera
  • Digital camera
All of the above:
  • iPhone 3G
  • Blackberry Storm
  • iPad
  • Macbook Pro
As a college student, I can't imagine life without the devices I currently use. My laptop is the most essential. Documents, music, movies, calendar, internet access - I use them every day. For the times it isn't convenient to have my laptop with me, I use my iPad or Blackberry and can usually get by. I also need my iPad to read textbooks for most of my classes. The digital camera is a new addition as of this Christmas, but I already take it everywhere with me. The Xbox I could easily live without, but the Bluray player I would miss. I use it more to stream Netflix than to play Blurays or DVDs. When I look at the things I need to do every week, I realize how dependent I am on these gadgets. I couldn't go through the school week without my laptop, iPad, and cell phone, and I would sorely miss my Blueray player and iPod/docking station. You could argue that kind of dependence isn't ideal, but all of these electronic media devices have allowed me and other students the ability to do more things, more quickly, more easily, and more sustainably. 

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Get a [Social Media] Life!

My first lesson in social media was this: create the account first, then ask for parent permission. My great trauma in middle school was not having an MSN messenger account like the other kids. I created a persuasive powerpoint presentation on the advantages of joining (a happier daughter, faster typing skills), but my parents didn't want their kids spending much time on the computer in the first place. Over a year later, my dad finally caved, though I had learned my lesson. When my friends started talking about Facebook, I knew I had to get one as soon as possible, before my parents had time to forbid it. In March of 2007, I set up my account and used it periodically. As more of my friends began creating accounts, I started spending more time on the site. These days, I'm grateful for the site as a way to stay in touch with family and friends from home. I don't often post statuses, but I do post quite a few pictures. I also post to friends' timelines and keep connected with FB chat. Check it out here.

Facebook was enough for me for the next five years, but I finally "jumped on the Twitter bandwagon" (my first tweet, incidentally) last January. My brother has informed me that I don't use it very well, and it's true. I don't have much to tweet about, but I do check it every day. Anyone who follows me would be greatly appreciated. It might help stop my little bro from comparing his 237 followers to my 55.

Blogging has been my newest foray into new new media, and this is actually the second of two blogs I contribute to. Over Christmas break, my two best friends from high school and I started our own blog to keep in touch while we are away at school. Unfortunately,  we posted some pictures of us from middle school, and I can't let you all see those without humiliating myself. No link to that - sorry!

To a lesser extent, I've started using Pinterest and Goodreads over the last year. I love them both, but I try not to spend too much time there. Pinterest can eat up an afternoon pretty quickly, but I've found some cool stuff there. If you want some fantastic book recommendations  check me out on Goodreads.That's about all for me. No MySpace. No YouTube. Just the basics.

Monday, January 14, 2013


Hey there! Welcome to my blog. I'll be updating this often with assignments from my Fundamentals of English for New Media class, and maybe a few orignal ideas too. Hope you find something interesting,  funny, life-changing (probs not), ect.