Blogs are areas of participatory persuasion. They are forums for discussion and sway, they seek to present ideas and open conversation. In my mapping, blogs served to present and solidify personal opinion by asking for agreement-- dissension is rarely greeted with friendly discourse.
Blogs are conversational spaces. Blogs are meta-rhetorical and reflective spaces. And blogs are--some more than others--places of remix and reinterpretation.
Blogs are not always trusted sources. Is it that blogs started out as reputable and then once accessed by the masses, they became less reputable? Or is it that because the masses have access to blogs now that they are pressured to be more reputable? I go back and forth on this issue. But, blogs are not news sites. Most are not regulated by other entities; they are regulated by the writer of the blog. What is to keep blogs factual? Must they cite references? Are they just for fun? I think that it depends on this blog. This is also very contextual. I think that with blogs knowledge-making is seen as a more collaborative process where readers are able to actively interact with what they are reading by commenting. Blogs also have the ability to hyperlink to other sources which may complement or supplement their own information. Blogs can invite discovery, perhaps because they are not fully trusted at the start and people want to search for the answers. Blogs can be an ignition of knowledge. On the other hand, though, blogs can be a detriment to learning if they are not properly contextualized. Students must be informed of the trivial nature of the information on blogs and to always test what they read.
I think blogs are an extention of the attention culture we are creating (starting with Queen for a Day and extending through Oprah to the 'net) in which one's identity is reflected (and thus made "real") in its expression through mass media.
My analysis of blogs suggests that blogs not only serve as important tools of circulation, they are starting to interact with mainstream media sources. More specifically, many of the blogs I analyzed used those sources as proof of what was being written in the blog. Conversely, the mainstream media had incorporated blogs as viable sources of first hand information.
What do I make of blogs....goodness...that's a large question. Perhaps my response best fits under the category of "what interesting tidbit did I discover from this project" The answer to that question would be that the notion of audience is rather complicated on blogs. Like my reflection says, I questioned whether the blogs simply become echo chambers where people essentially "preach to the choir"--voicing opinions to an audience that already agrees with them. OR, are they places for "genuine" dialogue and dialectic? If they become places of contention do they become less of a leisurely pastime and more of a chore?
Blogs are the op-ed piece that doesn't need a newspaper. They are the new digital diary, a place where writers expose themselves (metaphorically, if we're lucky) and their opinions for open scrutiny-- although the amount of response is somehow inversely proportional to the number of entries.
I think they are an innovative outlet for individuals to publish their thoughts, ideas, and opinions. Currently, I am inconclusive about how I feel towards the validity of blogs. I'm open to the idea of exploring their uses in academic discourse; however, guidelines for credibility and trustworthiness need to be established.
I think they are silly. I'll concede that perhaps my topic may not have been the most conducive for this assignment, but the bulk of the blogs I viewed offered little communication, interaction, dialogue, response, reflection, or feedback. I felt that blogs are a place for people to express themselves, but in the majority of my blog sampling people cared very little for accuracy, reliability, fact, or evidence. People's opinions on my question were unprofessional, unedited, and inadequate responses to a loaded question. I fail to see the point of most of these blog venues because they are limited in scope and perspective. YIKES.
After spending too much time hunting around in the world of political blogs (and reading Convergence Culture), I still see the value of blogging. I also see that they can be quite dangerous, especially if they are one's only source of information. I look at individual blogs as small pieces of the larger story. However, blogs do have great potential in the sense of collaboration within classrooms or other communities.
Well, it seems that blogs can definitely be productive as far as bringing communities together and facilitating dialogue about subjects that may or may not have a small interest group. My experience with blogs in my blog map is that they seem to be surprisingly democratic. The blogs I looked at had all sorts of people reading and posting ... individuals that were clearly of various ages and educational levels. While they can be, I am sure, useful and exciting I am not sure that I found the most social group of bloggers... some posts were months apart. But, then again, I did not look at many corporately linked blogs that I noticed attract a lot more attention than the smaller blogs on blogger and word press...
Blogs are a different species produced from within the Internet jungle. They tend to be personal and similar to an on-line dialogue with anyone who is willing to read the post. Sometimes people share in the conversation and sometimes no one does but it does not seem to matter to the authors who blog. I find this interesting b/c it is as if the blog is a chance to see the author's thoughts on the virtual page and then see if the audience will or can respond to his/her thoughts. Blogs bring a different kind of knowledge to the writing process and to writing because it is a way to express one's self publically within an informative space.
Blogs are (information) spaces where people with Internet access have the opportunity to publish their writing. Blogs are also spaces that (usually) provide people the opportunity to engage in a dialogue (though it might not always be a meaningful one) about a topic--one usually germane to the particular blog at hand. Intrinsic to blogging, at least in my opinion, is an augmented sense of self importance. In other words, there is an inherent belief that people actually care what you have to say. For some, this may not be the case--much to the dismay of the blogger and those engaging in a dialogue.
Blogs are a space to share knowledge and make meaning of what we, as consumers of knowledge, process.
Blogs are largely individual creations that, if gathered in a community, can contribute to a collective knowledge. Blogs either exist as islands - as in my own personal blog - or they exist within a community that networks them together. In that instance, blogs become parasitic and incestual creatures that feed off each other in a positive way. They reference each other and build a collective of ideas that reinforce certain values and devalue others. Particularly, my ideas center on my experiences with music and sports cultures that are ideologically united. In this instance, a trolling of the blog community can deliver a wide array of insights ...
This was very new to me. Like Emily, I am a spectator more so than a participate and would never blog if not forced. And here, in order for the blog to exist and work properly, people must be invested in a topic. They must respond and actively participate in the form of posting. How we define knowledge in terms of blogging changes. You can find almost anything. From potato salad to student loans, there's just about anything. Who really has the right to say in this space what's worth noting and what's not.Note: And interesting enough, I wanted to say that wasn't the question, and what are you talking about? No one said a word to this. The conversation leaped and jumped around with ease.
Blogs are expansive in knowledge and are focused on community while still discussing highly politicized arguments. Blogs are more reputable than I thought. In fact, many of the blogs I needed to refer to other references in order to keep up with the conversation.
What do I make of blogs? Well, I think blogs can be a good way to get people talking about questions and issues that really need to be discussed. Sometimes they allow people to speak who might otherwise have no public voice. They provide access for someone whit questions to others who might have answers and for people with special interests to others who share their passions. Sometimes they also provide a form of socializing and entertainment. Sometimes, however, they can be a big waste of time.
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